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Dollar dips slightly; StatsCan readies revised July jobs report amid data error

TORONTO - The Canadian dollar closed little changed Tuesday after Statistics Canada surprised markets in announcing that it will release revised job creation figures for July.

The loonie was down 0.02 of a cent at 91.56 cents US after a statement on the agency's website said an error had been detected and that it would launch a review of the data verification process. Meanwhile, a revised jobs report for July will be issued this Friday.

Statistics Canada reported last Friday that the economy created only 200 jobs last month, a far cry from the approximately 15,000 positions that economists had forecast.

The loonie had traded lower earlier in the session as the U.S. dollar gained against other currencies amid geopolitical worries and falling German investor confidence.

The tone on markets was cautious as Ukraine said it would deny a Russian aid mission entry because it had not been certified by the Red Cross and could be a covert military operation.

Ukraine insists any aid must be delivered by the International Red Cross.

Also, Germany’s ZEW indicator of confidence among professional investment analysts sagged to a 20-month low in August. The ZEW institute’s index fell to 8.6 from 27.1. Market observers had expected a fall to only 17.0.

Fears about a possible escalation of the crisis in Ukraine have weighed on Germany's business confidence in recent weeks.

On the commodity markets, the September crude contract in New York declined 71 cents to US$97.37 a barrel after the International Energy Agency cut its forecast for global oil demand.

December gold bullion added a dime to US$1,310.60 an ounce while September copper fell two cents to US$3.15 a pound.

As well as monitoring the situation in Ukraine, investors are keeping one eye on Iraq.

Iraq’s incumbent prime minister, Nouri al-Maliki, appeared more isolated Tuesday as he pressed his battle to remain in power while Iraqi politicians and the international community rallied behind a Shiite premier-designate who could be a more unifying figure.

The power struggle in Baghdad comes as Iraq is battling militants from the al-Qaida breakaway group in the north and west. The offensive by the group Islamic State has captured large chunks of Iraqi territory since June.

The Canadian Press

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