Loonie regains strength as price of crude rises from overnight low

TORONTO -- The Canadian dollar was trading above 70 cents US with an hour left before North American stock markets opened Tuesday, but the currency dipped below that mark overnight as Asian stock markets plunged and the price of oil fell.

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The loonie traded at 70.34 cents US shortly after 8 a.m. ET -- up 0.26 of a cent from Monday's close.

However, Canada's dollar had traded as low as 69.80 cents US about 4 a.m. ET on international currency markets when oil futures traded below US$30.

On overseas stock markets, the Shanghai index fell 6.4 per cent before it closed and markets in Hong Kong and Tokyo also showed significant declines of nearly 2.5 per cent.

Major European indexes were showing small declines of less than one per cent, with an hour to go before North American stock markets were to open at 9:30 a.m. ET.

The Dow Jones industrial futures were up a marginal 6.0 points at 15,817.0, S&P 500 futures advanced one point to 1,871.25 and the Nasdaq futures were down 0.5 point at 4,186.25.

On the commodity markets, the February gold contract was up $7.10 at US$1,112.40 an ounce and the March crude contract was up five cents at US$30.39 per barrel.

Earlier, oil briefly traded below US$28 per barrel.

On Monday, the Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX index ended the day down 246.42 points at 12,143.16.



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