Canadian dollar tumbled to a fresh eleven-and-a-half-year low at C$1.3784 per U.S. dollar, losing 0.30% for the day; affected by a resumption of decline by oil prices, upon which a large chunk of the Canadian economy depends. Investors intensified their sell orders for oil positions as the U.S. fed is expected to raise interest rates later in the day, which would make the dollar stronger, which in turn would make oil more expensive to non-dollar holding buyers since oil contracts are priced in the dollar. Brent crude futures dived 80 cents, or 2.08% to $37.93 a barrel. U.S. crude prices slid 50 cents, or 1.39% to $36.83 per barrel.
Sterling stumbled as well, after data showed wages growth slowing to 2.4% y\y in the three months to October, from 3.0% in September. Traders ignored other data which were more positive, like the unemployment rate which fell to a new 7-year low at 5.2%. Sterling dipped to an eight-day low against the dollar at 1.4987, before pulling back to 1.5027, registering a small loss of 0.05%. It edged down 0.12% against the euro to 0.7274. Sterling gave up earlier gains against the yen to trade flat at 183.10.
European shares engaged in lively trading, rising for the second day as investors view the expected U.S. rate hike as a vote of confidence in the world's largest economy. The pan-European index FTSEurofirst gained 0.81% to 1,423. France's CAC 40 added 40 points, or 0.86% to 4,654. Germany and Britain outperformed the broader market, with the former's DAX index advancing 106 points, or 1.02% to 10,556, and the latter's FTSE index grabbing 60 points, or 1.03% to 6,079.
Wall Street opened higher win tandem, taking spirit from positive data that showed building permits for November soaring to an annualized 1.29M, the highest since June. Housing starts rose to 1.17M, compared with October's 1.06M and the highest since August. Dow Jones jumped 156 points, or 0.89% to 17,679. NASDAQ gained 37 points, or 0.77% to 5,033. S&P 500 added 14 points, or 0.73% to 2,057.