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Canadian Dollar Reaches Parity with US$

kdawson posted more than 5 years ago | from the who's-loony-now-eh dept.

The Almighty Buck 702

boxlight writes in to mark the occasion when the Canadian dollar hit parity with the US dollar for the first time in 31 years. The article notes that Canada has run a budget surplus in each of the last 10 years. "This is actually bad for the profits of Canadian corporations that sell their products to the US for US dollars (Canada sells far more to the US that the US sells to Canada); but it means us Canucks will get cheaper Macs as the Canadian prices get closer to US prices with every new release."

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Article is useless without a graph! (2, Insightful)

A beautiful mind (821714) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682119)

Anyone got a graph handy that shows how the two dollars reached parity?

USA Today? (3, Funny)

geoffrobinson (109879) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682141)

So I guess the original article wasn't in USA Today if there wasn't a graph.

Re:USA Today? (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#20682247)

This sort of behavior isn't really unexpected. See here [shelleytherepublican.com] for some cogent analysis on the Canadian problem. I suspect they are undercutting honest American enterprises [shelleytherepublican.com] by manufacturing kilts [wordpress.com] and other socialist goods [shelleytherepublican.com] ;-)

Re:USA Today? (1)

kwandar (733439) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682601)

That cogent analysis of the Canadian problem was ... hilarious! :) Thank you!!

Re:Article is useless without a graph! (5, Funny)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682195)

A lot of people don't have graphs and Iraq such as and.

Re:Article is useless without a graph! (4, Informative)

jamie (78724) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682209)

Re:Article is useless without a graph! (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#20682599)

This graph might be a little more useful, as it goes back 30+ years:

http://www.cbc.ca/news/background/economy/loonie.html [www.cbc.ca]

Re:Article is useless without a graph! (3, Informative)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682265)

Ask and ye shall Receive. Here's the link to the graph and data on Yahoo Finance [yahoo.com] . As of my posting, it appears that the US dollar has bounced back a bit, and is worth 1.0095 Canadian dollars.

Re:Article is useless without a graph! (5, Funny)

eln (21727) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682267)

Imagine a graph with two lines. Now imagine those two lines converging until they meet.

Re:Article is useless without a graph! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#20682289)

A graph of currency values isn't going to show you 'how.' It would be better to look at graphs of budget deficits and current account deficits (together they are larger than $1 trillion/yr).

Here you have a graph: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#20682337)

Here you have a graph:

http://www.x-rates.com/d/USD/CAD/graph120.html [x-rates.com]

Re:Article is useless without a graph! (5, Interesting)

kebes (861706) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682349)

Here's a graph [yahoo.com] .However it doesn't show parity because different markets trade at slightly different values, as explained in this news item [www.cbc.ca] :

"Currency trading is an over-the-counter market," a Bank of Canada spokesperson told CBCNews.ca. "It's not like the TSX." So there can be small discrepancies depending on the trades the data source monitors.
However that article mentions that "The loonie briefly reached $1.0003 US on foreign exchange markets shortly before 11 a.m. ET, the Bank of Canada said." and TFA says "The Canadian dollar reached $1.0002, before retreating to trade at 99.93 U.S. cents at 11:01 a.m. in New York." So that narrows down the approximate moment when parity was reached.

At present it's just below parity (0.9986), but the expectation is for the Canadian dollar to exceed the US dollar in the near future.

Re:Article is useless without a graph! (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682695)

The really amusing (and pathetic) twist on all of this is watching Canadian retailers try to twist out of pricing their goods based on parity or near-parity. They simply want to keep ripping Canadians off even as goods coming in from the states are effectively dropping in price. The real scam is for automobiles.

Re:Article is useless without a graph! (-1, Redundant)

ToasterofDOOM (878240) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682363)

PICS OR IT DIDN'T HAPPEN

Re:Article is useless without a graph! (5, Insightful)

Em Adespoton (792954) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682449)

In order to see anything useful, you should also plot the Euro and the Yen. While the CAD has increased slightly in buying power in recent years, the bigger news is that the USD has plummeted, likely due to bad fiscal policy (war debt).

Re:Article is useless without a graph! (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#20682497)

Here you go:

http://finance.google.com/finance?q=CADUSD [google.com] (Google Finance)

Well thank god for the Macs (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#20682127)

Because it takes a computer like a Mac to warm our igloos.
 

what to do with "Canadian dollar jokes"? (5, Funny)

peter303 (12292) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682137)

Answer: Change them to "American dollar jokes"

Re:what to do with "Canadian dollar jokes"? (1, Funny)

Tackhead (54550) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682173)

> Answer: Change them to "American dollar jokes"

Hey, didn't you mean "Change them to 'American dollar jokes', eh?", you hoser?

So, anyways, today will be a day long remembered, eh? It has seen the end of the the US Dollar, it will soon see the end of the Empire, eh?

Re:what to do with "Canadian dollar jokes"? (0, Troll)

ShieldW0lf (601553) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682641)

Don't get too comfortable with this state of affairs.

What will happen when we stop digging sand for oil to pipe to the US?

What will happen to the value of all those homes in Alberta when this highly inefficient short term industry dries up? Because there are a ton of young people out there who have two mortgages on those highly overvalued homes, expecting that they are going to have some long term worth. Will anyone want to buy them and live in them later? Probably not.

Every barrel of oil we sell the US from those sands represents a vast amount of human effort by Canadians that doesn't do anything to further the interests of our country, and actually leaves us a polluted mess of land that we'll later have to clean up.

Re:what to do with "Canadian dollar jokes"? (1)

king-manic (409855) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682725)


What will happen when we stop digging sand for oil to pipe to the US?


I'll be celebrating my 415th birthday.

Re:what to do with "Canadian dollar jokes"? (1)

ArcherB (796902) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682303)

Answer: Change them to "American dollar jokes"
Yeah, but then you wouldn't get as much out of it.

Re:what to do with "Canadian dollar jokes"? (-1, Offtopic)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682369)

You must mean United Statesian dollar jokes. America includes all of North America and South America, including Canada, the US, Mexico, Brazil, Chile, etc..

Re:what to do with "Canadian dollar jokes"? (1)

lisaparratt (752068) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682409)

I, personally, prefer the term USAlien.

Re:what to do with "Canadian dollar jokes"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#20682589)

You must mean United Statesian dollar jokes. America includes all of North America and South America, including Canada, the US, Mexico, Brazil, Chile, etc..
This is not a fight you are going to win. "United Statesian" sounds stupid. If we were speaking Spanish we could say estadounidense or if we were speaking French we could say États-unien. These don't sound so bad and roll off the tongue quite easily. But native speakers of English aren't going to suddenly change to start calling citizens "United Statesians" (which doesn't roll off the tongue easily) when they could just say the much simpler "Americans." As the only people who want the term "American" back are geography police and since the term doesn't conflict with the naming of any nationality in the Americas there is little motivation for Americans to change their method of speech.

Btw, when I speak Spanish I use estadounidense to describe a US citizens and americano to describe a resident of the Americas. But when I speak English I use American. I have yet to have any problem with anybody not understanding what I am speaking.

Re:what to do with "Canadian dollar jokes"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#20682617)

Ah, but the name of our country isn't "United States." It is "The United States of America." So I'd prefer if you called me a "United States of American." Or just American for short.

Re:what to do with "Canadian dollar jokes"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#20682705)

Sure, why not, but just remember, you're still stuck with Quebec

And the changing value of the US $ will never alter that.

There goes the "How much is that in Canadian" joke (0, Redundant)

CyberSnyder (8122) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682153)

And I'll be saving the occasional Canadian quarter. Thanks George Bush.

Re:There goes the "How much is that in Canadian" j (1)

gn0min0mic0n (1141573) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682239)

And just think: when the plans for the North American Union are finalized, we can add the power of the Peso to our combined economy, which will unite us all under the shadow of the Amero!

Re:There goes the "How much is that in Canadian" j (1)

Amouth (879122) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682565)

i wonder if the vending machines will start excepting them now.. always annoying when you think you have enough change and one of the damn things slips in........

Yeah but.... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#20682155)

Our economy is strong, and always growing. At least that's what the preznut keeps telling me.

Three jobs! Uniquely American, isn't it.

What's the obsession with 1 to 1? (1)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682157)

What with all the new American dollars flooding the market at the moment, is it any wonder that its value would sink considerably?

Re:What's the obsession with 1 to 1? (4, Insightful)

JackHoffman (1033824) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682613)

These things are called psychological barriers. Likewise with the $1.40 per Euro mark that was reached at about the same time. If these barriers fall, people take extra notice of the trend, not because there's much of a difference to the day before, but because humans pay more attention to round numbers. On your 20th birthday, you're just one day older than the day before, but you don't celebrate the day before or after your 20th birthday. It's kinda stupid, but that's the way it is.

About time (1)

rockabilly (468561) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682159)

... and there is nothing wrong with this either IMV. The industry is very adaptive. It will adapt to this and we will be stronger from it.

Re:About time (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#20682201)

> ... and there is nothing wrong with this either IMV. The industry is very adaptive. It will adapt to this and we will be stronger from it.

"This business will get out of control. It will get out of control and we'll be lucky to live through it."

Re:About time (2, Interesting)

rockabilly (468561) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682285)

Interestingly enough, I listened to an industry expert on the radio who stated that the high Canadian dollar was not the result of the stronger Canadian economy, but rather a weakening American economy. I guess those who are bailing from the greenback are viewing Canada in a different light...

Re:About time (2, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682765)

That's absolutely the case. The American dollar is falling in comparison to a number of currencies, in particular the Euro.

Re:About time (4, Interesting)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682431)

I still want to know why all the books in the book store, and magazines, have the US price at 2/3 of the Canadian price, when the exchange rate hasn't been that bad in years.

Re:About time (1)

rockabilly (468561) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682541)

Yeah, that's the problem right there. Companies will make win-fall profits from this. You won't start seeing any real changes made to pricing of Canadian products until the Canuck dollar stabilizes and industries are pressured to do so.

CDN book prices are a rip-off (5, Informative)

diodeus (96408) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682693)

I grilled my local independent bookseller on this. She blamed the publishers, which are all in the U.S.

Complain about it here: http://www.competitionbureau.gc.ca/ [competitionbureau.gc.ca]

Screwed economy but cheaper Macs?! (5, Insightful)

MLopat (848735) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682179)

"This is actually bad for the profits of Canadian corporations that sell their products to the US for US dollars (Canada sells far more to the US that the US sells to Canada); but it means us Canucks will get cheaper Macs as the Canadian prices get closer to US prices with every new release."

Somehow that seems like little comfort for us Canadians that realize the impact this has overall on our economy. Anyone that isn't into business or economics up here gets excited about the CDN dollar being stronger because it translates into better cross border shopping for a very small minority, cheaper vacations, and some discounted consumer items like Macs. But take a look at how this impacts the country as a whole and we don't have much to celebrate as an exporting nation.

Re:Screwed economy but cheaper Macs?! (1)

Alzheimers (467217) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682319)

we don't have much to celebrate as an exporting nation.

Hockey, Beer and Maple Syrup! What's not to celebrate?

Re:Screwed economy but cheaper Macs?! (5, Insightful)

pokerdad (1124121) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682403)

we don't have much to celebrate as an exporting nation.

Our economy is stronger than it has been in my entire life. At .70 US, .80 US and .90 US there were people predicting the imminent collapse of the economy, but as a whole it has just gotten stronger.

And while we may export resources, we largely import manufactured goods, so for some one looking to buy just about anything, this is good news.

Its also worth noting that while the loonie has gotten a little stronger, this is largely a story of the US dollar weakening and the Canadian dollar not following (as it has often done in the past). This means that the price of Canadian goods have not increased globally, leaving plenty of opportunity to sell to other markets.

Re:Screwed economy but cheaper Macs?! (4, Insightful)

king-manic (409855) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682475)


Somehow that seems like little comfort for us Canadians that realize the impact this has overall on our economy. Anyone that isn't into business or economics up here gets excited about the CDN dollar being stronger because it translates into better cross border shopping for a very small minority, cheaper vacations, and some discounted consumer items like Macs. But take a look at how this impacts the country as a whole and we don't have much to celebrate as an exporting nation.


Dont' over estimate the crunch on our export industry. A significant amount is via oil which is a commodity that does not reduce in demand linearly with price. Manufacturing etc... has been on a steady decline for the last 8 years as well as the dollar rose. That has hurt the eastern Ontario economy. At the same time sky high oil prices and an increase in demand world wide has lead to a super heated economy in the west. The west gains from this as our commodity is in demand and we are at capacity to provide. so a Price increase helps the western provinces while it hurts the eastern provinces. Our trade with the US is immense but it hasn't ever been about selling them large quantities of manufactured goods. There is also a time lag related to the effects as contracts signed when the dollar was weaker will remain for a while. So it'll be a while before we see how parity helps or hinder us. As a westerner I don't mind a big crunch in the eastern economic power block.

Re:Screwed economy but cheaper Macs?! (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#20682487)

Anyone that isn't into business or economics up here gets excited about the CDN dollar being stronger because it translates into better cross border shopping for a very small minority...


Small minority?

In 2001, most of Canada's population of 30 million lived within 200 kilometres of the United States. In fact, the inhabitants of our three biggest cities -- Toronto, Montréal and Vancouver -- can drive to the border in less than two hours.
link [nrcan.gc.ca]

Re:Screwed economy but cheaper Macs?! (2, Insightful)

Cedric Tsui (890887) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682569)

Not at all. To our economist's surprise, the Canadian export economy is coping with the rapidly rising dollar very well. One theory is that the dollar has been rising for such a long time that all the weaker companies have already been weeded out. Canadian organizations are using the high dollar as an opportunity to purchase equipment from the states to make themselves more competitive.

In fact, Canadian economists were also VERY worried about the impact of the American housing market collapse on our economy. This turned out again to be a false alarm. Lumber exports have fallen, but aside from that, the economy just keeps trucking along to everyone's surprise.

You're right. The high dollar shouldn't be good for Canada. But for some reason, it isn't hurting much.

Benefits to a cheaper dollar (5, Insightful)

ArcherB (796902) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682229)

People assume that the dollar falling in value in relation to foreign currency is a bad thing. This is not necessarily the case. Here are some benefits:
* American products become cheaper to foreign markets. This helps with the trade imbalances we currently have.
* Foreign products become more expensive to American consumers, also helping with trade deficits.
* It discourages foreign workers from sneaking into the US. Getting $4.00 an hour is suddenly not so much compared to what they get paid in their home country.

I could go on, but you get the idea.

Re:Benefits to a cheaper dollar (1)

Drakin020 (980931) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682373)

* Foreign products become more expensive to American consumers, also helping with trade deficits.
Did you ever think that maybe the majority of consumers buy foreign products? How is the increase in price a good thing? Rather than paying 10k for that Honda Civic will i not be paying 15k?

Re:Benefits to a cheaper dollar (1)

oyenstikker (536040) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682697)

The idea is that instead of buying a 15k Civic, you'll buy a 12k American Cobalt or Neon.

Re:Benefits to a cheaper dollar (2, Informative)

pnewhook (788591) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682417)

It discourages foreign workers from sneaking into the US. Getting $4.00 an hour is suddenly not so much compared to what they get paid in their home country.

Yes. $4 per hour in Canada would be illegal. The lowest allowable minimum wage in Canada is $7, and it is typically around $8 depending on what provincve you live in.

Re:Benefits to a cheaper dollar (1)

bentcd (690786) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682775)

The lowest allowable minimum wage in Canada is $7
In other words, the minimum minimum wage? Yay for meta-laws :-)

We should get this into WTO treaties - then we could have a minimum minimum minimum wage . . .

Re:Benefits to a cheaper dollar (5, Interesting)

benzapp (464105) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682419)

The problem is we have no native industry for the vast majority of things Americans desire. We also are a net importer of food and energy.

Someday, countries like Canada with lots of wheat will want something besides debt instruments in exchange for their goods. So too will countries like Saudi Arabia want something of tangible value in exchange for their oil.

Rapidly rising prices of foreign goods may someday bring back American industry, but that is a generation away. We have too few engineers and no manufacturing infrastructure. We will have to train a whole new class of workers and build many new factories. This doesn't happen overnight.

Re:Benefits to a cheaper dollar (2, Interesting)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682647)

We have too few engineers and no manufacturing infrastructure. We will have to train a whole new class of workers and build many new factories. This doesn't happen overnight.

I think you vastly underestimate the existing base. Part of the reason that there are fewer people in manufacturing in the US is because US manufacturing increased in productivity. People that spent a lifetime as high school grads doing rote tasks were obsoleted by robots. Manual machinists were replaced by fewer people that operate faster and more accurate CNC machines, and those CNC machines get more productive every year.

While China's manufacturing output is huge, $3T+/yr, US manufacturing is still a $1.5 trillion dollar/yr industry.

Consumer Electronics is the one big non-native industry, but they can be made in the US. It's moved out primarily due to cost issues, competitors can make them cheaper, but I doubt that will really come back in significant numbers.

Re:Benefits to a cheaper dollar (1)

Stooshie (993666) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682429)

... * It discourages foreign workers from sneaking into the US. Getting $4.00 an hour is suddenly not so much compared to what they get paid in their home country. ...

Considering 1 US Dollar(USD) = 10.969 Mexican Peso(MXN) that aint gonna happen any time soon.

Re:Benefits to a cheaper dollar (2, Informative)

Nexx (75873) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682465)

Unless the relative buying power of 1USD = 1MXN, that statement's meaningless without comparisons to previous exchange rates.

Re:Benefits to a cheaper dollar (1)

Peyna (14792) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682769)

The peso and dollar were closer together 10 years ago, and slowly slipping apart again.

It's hovered around 1:10 / 1:11 for awhile now.

Meanwhile (1)

an.echte.trilingue (1063180) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682459)

Meanwhile, while I sit in Europe trying to irk my way through grad school living off of dollars I saved while I was in the army(and a part-time job doing IT stuff for a small business), I watch their value and my immediate standard of living drop.

For everybody on a fixed income, including retirees and people like me, this sucks. Seriously, parity with the CAD? No, this is not a good thing.

As for the idea that discouraging foreign workers is a good thing, might I ask in what universe you live in? Do you actually want to pay 25 bucks for a meal in a cheapish restaurant? That is what will happen if the immigrant labor leaves.

Re:Meanwhile (5, Insightful)

ArcherB (796902) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682691)

Meanwhile, while I sit in Europe trying to irk my way through grad school living off of dollars I saved while I was in the army(and a part-time job doing IT stuff for a small business), I watch their value and my immediate standard of living drop.

I'm sorry that has happened to you. Unfortunately, anytime the value of something changes, someone wins and someone loses. I know hindsight is 20/20, but how far did you expect to get living in Europe with US dollars in the bank? Why would you not change those over to Euros when you decided to live there?

As for the idea that discouraging foreign workers is a good thing, might I ask in what universe you live in? Do you actually want to pay 25 bucks for a meal in a cheapish restaurant? That is what will happen if the immigrant labor leaves.

I have no problem with immigrant labor. What I have a problem with is illegal immigrant labor. Sure, it helps me get a cheaper burger at Chili's, but when I have to pay $50 for an aspirin at a hospital, I figure I'm not saving all that much. Besides, slavery allowed for cheap food and clothing as well, but that doesn't make it right. When an illegal is working at a plantation.. I mean farm, they are more or less owned by that farm. Only instead of being shackled by chains, they are shackled with the thread of deportation or imprisonment. I expect foreign workers in the US to get a fair wage. When that worker is here illegally, enforcing minimum wage or any other labor laws is impossible.

Re:Benefits to a cheaper dollar (2, Informative)

Seumas (6865) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682479)

Huh? How are these good?

* American products become cheaper to foreign markets. This helps with the trade imbalances we currently have.

American products are cheaper. American employees paid less or offshored.

* Foreign products become more expensive to American consumers, also helping with trade deficits.

Most products sold to American consumers are foriegn products. American employees being paid less because of the first point above also have more difficulty affording most products they buy, because of the second point.

* It discourages foreign workers from sneaking into the US. Getting $4.00 an hour is suddenly not so much compared to what they get paid in their home country.

Doesn't matter, because we don't need them to come to America. We can just oursource and offshore to them in their own country.

Don't forget the federal debt (1)

roystgnr (4015) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682481)

That right, bond-holding suckers, we'll be paying back your 9 trillion dollars, just as soon as the dollar is worth so little that we can afford to do so. Crisis averted!

Re:Benefits to a cheaper dollar (0)

GodfatherofSoul (174979) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682529)

Yes, and when our silly Milton Friedman experiment reaches total failure, businesses will have plenty of native, English-speaking cheap labor to employ.

Re:Benefits to a cheaper dollar (1)

Jugalator (259273) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682543)

* American products become cheaper to foreign markets. This helps with the trade imbalances we currently have.
Is that "good" in the same way as being forced to sell something cheap is good?

Re:Benefits to a cheaper dollar (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#20682575)

Can't believe that the parent was modded insightful:

American products become cheaper to foreign markets. This helps with the trade imbalances we currently have.

What consumer products are manufactured in the U.S. nowadays? (This is part of why you have a trade deficit.)

Foreign products become more expensive to American consumers, also helping with trade deficits.

I don't understand economics, but I *think* this leads to inflation.

It discourages foreign workers from sneaking into the US. Getting $4.00 an hour is suddenly not so much compared to what they get paid in their home country.

I don't *think* a lot of Canadians are sneaking into the US for $4/hr jobs. That's my thoughts.

Re:Benefits to a cheaper dollar (1)

Random BedHead Ed (602081) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682579)

Very true, there are some benefits. The main people it sucks for are people who need to spend money from a USD account overseas (as in your imports example). I know this because I live in the UK, where the dollar hit half a pound a few months ago (it used to be £1.65 when I first started traveling to the UK - oh how things have changed). Spending dollars here is not recommended if you can avoid it.

Of course while this affects Americans who want to travel or live abroad, it makes tourism to America a lot cheaper. So if you don't mind waiting in abysmal lines to be fingerprinted and harassed by the DHS, seeing the Grand Canyon and going on shopping sprees just got cheaper. That could be a nice side benefit for the US.

Re:Benefits to a cheaper dollar (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#20682593)

Its not the fact that it's cheaper that is the story. It is why it is cheaper and how the dollar's value is dropping. One word inflation.

This is not a good thing for Americans. Our oil merchants have already started abandoning the dollar starting with UAE and Kuwait. If they don't they will have some serious inflationary effects in their own economy. The pressure is on and Americans are about to get a drop in living standard. But don't worry, at least our Social Security and free health care for all will save us... right? Just add a few more zeros to that deposit from the Fed and everything will turn out alright.

As Gore Vidal once quipped "We live in the United States of Amnesia. Everything is a blank after Monday morning."

Re:Benefits to a cheaper dollar (1)

fm6 (162816) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682663)

American products become cheaper to foreign markets. This helps with the trade imbalances we currently have
Let me guess, you're a Republican, right? So to you, higher prices for imports is a Good Thing, because of the trade imbalance. But if you're a blue collar family struggling to live on an income that's stagnant at best, higher prices are just higher prices.

The fact is, a weak dollar is a Bad Sign. It means that there's less demand for the goods the U.S. sells abroad, and thus less demand for the currency needed to buy those goods. The "positive" effects you cite are just the feedback mechanisms built into any semi-stable economy.

Re:Benefits to a cheaper dollar (1, Insightful)

PPH (736903) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682723)

American products become cheaper to foreign markets. This helps with the trade imbalances we currently have.

What American products? Do we still make anything here (besides Brittney Spears albums)?

Foreign products become more expensive to American consumers, also helping with trade deficits.

As do the imported components and raw materials used to build the few 'American made' products left.


Generally, its a wash, except that the declining dollar is just another way of cutting your wages and encouraging you to spend what little you have left at the 'company store'.

How strange (1, Funny)

ohzero (525786) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682249)

I was just up there for a conference, and I stayed in the Royal Hotel. I hope this isn't all my fault.

The glass is half full or half empty? (5, Insightful)

Dzimas (547818) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682257)

Another way of looking at this is that the US dollar is in freefall against the Euro and other major currencies. The shift between the US and Canadian dollars reflects this new reality. That said, I suspect Forex traders are caught up in the euphoria of parity. The Canadian dollar might well dip significantly below $1 American again as the rush of breathless media attention dries up and currency traders take their profits and run. This certainly isn't good news for Canadian manufacturers - I run a little electronics company that sells 90% of our goods in the USA. We have raised some prices by as much as 30% over the past five years, just to maintain margins. However, our customers don't necessarily see it that way - they think we're getting greedy. To keep things from getting out of hand, we've moved some production to China and started to source North American components in the USA, rather than dealing with Canadian distributors. That's not good news for our economy.

Remember the good old days, Yen versus Dollar? (0)

Shivetya (243324) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682355)

Whose economy tanked? Japan's.

The dollar has always been overvalued. Yet the doom and gloom isn't for the US when the dollar's value comes down, its usually for the other side. Usually its the other side who does the majority of exporting. Exporters to the US will take it on the chin.

Re:Remember the good old days, Yen versus Dollar? (1)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682657)

But if the US dollar is the only one tanking, and they don't actually produce the products themselves, they have no choice but to buy it form outside the country.

Re:The glass is half full or half empty? (1)

rockabilly (468561) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682397)

Unfortunately, its not so great when you have the largest market in the world and all other countries use your dollar as the defacto standard, comparing theirs to yours.

By dropping your own standards, you create instability in the marketplace since there is no longer a stable standard to reference.

This is also why the price of gold has skyrocketed. People tend to fall on to precious metals as a form of stability in situations like this.

Re:The glass is half full or half empty? (2, Interesting)

king-manic (409855) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682595)

Another way of looking at this is that the US dollar is in freefall against the Euro and other major currencies. The shift between the US and Canadian dollars reflects this new reality. That said, I suspect Forex traders are caught up in the euphoria of parity. The Canadian dollar might well dip significantly below $1 American again as the rush of breathless media attention dries up and currency traders take their profits and run. This certainly isn't good news for Canadian manufacturers - I run a little electronics company that sells 90% of our goods in the USA. We have raised some prices by as much as 30% over the past five years, just to maintain margins. However, our customers don't necessarily see it that way - they think we're getting greedy. To keep things from getting out of hand, we've moved some production to China and started to source North American components in the USA, rather than dealing with Canadian distributors. That's not good news for our economy.

Primary resources have been our #1 industry (Oil, Wood, uranium etc..). The increase in dollar values hurt manufacturing most as many of the primary resources we export are constantly in high demand and will not diminish in a linear relationship to price. It's a toss up at how the increased dollar will effect us. It may not be negative uniformly. It is detrimental to the manufacturing industry but that industry has always been secondary and heavily concentrated in Ontario. It might diminish prosperity in Ontario but it will increase prosperity in the west.

Oh dear, (0, Flamebait)

dwalsh (87765) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682259)

... all the Slashdotters who were moving to Canada to escape their totalitarian state will be whining about how dear everything is up there now.

You did all move to Canada right?

Re:Oh dear, (2, Funny)

MadMidnightBomber (894759) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682557)

.. all the Slashdotters who were moving to Canada to escape their totalitarian state will be whining about how dear everything is up there now. You did all move to Canada right?

Apparently, it was just the ones that can do math.

Book Prices? (5, Insightful)

senor_burt (515819) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682299)

Can the book publishers start to change their book prices, then? It made sense before when they priced them out relative to currency, but at this point, to spend $32 CDN versus $21 USD for the same book, well, as far as I'm concerned, Canadian book vendors are going to go out of business as I start to buy more from Amazon.com rather than Amazon.ca - and Amazon.com frequently offers free shipping.

Re:Book Prices? (1)

^_^x (178540) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682411)

Keen thought.
I was thinking it would be about time to order some stuff from the USA that I'd put off, but I'm going to have to keep an eye open for things like books that have two fixed prices - so long as it's not something like vehicles that gets taxed so hard in Canada to cancel out any saving.

I always get a chuckle out of video game magazines with demo discs - like I'm going to pay $15 for a monthly newsrag and some demos, haha...

Re:Book Prices? (1)

mousdahl (988536) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682603)

A couple of the comic shops I go to have already started charging me the US price listed on the back. Mighty kind of 'em, I think.

Re:Book Prices? (1)

jo42 (227475) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682651)

Just don't expect the price of anything in Canada to drop - greed lives on...

In other news... (1)

stewbacca (1033764) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682321)

In other news, Apple stock soared on the account that Canadians only spend their dollars on Macs!

We need a northern wall... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#20682341)

...or our culture may be destroyed.

They speak a different version of the english language (and even French) and we let their trucks on our roads.

We allow their rampant bacon and beer imports despite their higher labor and environmental standards.

Their people are infuriatingly polite and respectful and I think they may be benefiting from global warming.

I fear we are building our wall on the wrong border.

Sorry but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#20682375)

Sorry to break it up to canadians, but as a european, I still haven't seen computer prices reflect the 1:1.4 ratio between the us$ and the euro, nearly all prices are translated 1 us$ : 1 euro, and it really sucks.

Price difference... (1)

Frederic54 (3788) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682385)

Meanwhile, for instance, a Honda Goldwing is US$20'000 and CAD$30'000, same thing for almost all cars, especially sports car like the WRX STi or others...

It's time we all go shopping in USA, I live in Montréal so I am 45 minutes from NY state and often go to Plattsburgh or even Burlington in VT, just to buy stuff sometimes 60% cheaper than here.

the way things are going... (2, Funny)

FudRucker (866063) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682389)

it wont be long until the US Dollar reaches parity with the Mexican peso...

This has been going on near the border for years (2, Informative)

Enlarged to Show Tex (911413) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682407)

Various establishments (hotels, restaurants, etc) have been taking CAD at par for many years, although most of them stopped doing so once 1 CAD dropped below 0.75 USD (and there have been times in the past 10-12 years where it was as long as 0.59 USD/CAD. The only difference now is that soon those establishments that take CAD at par will start making money from the forex conversion instead of losing it... Also, here in Minnesota, Canadian coins have always been easy to spend as if they were US coins...

U.S. Economic Decline (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#20682507)


Currencies are adjusting to the prospect of a U.S. economic decline because of its non-competitiveness from the LACK of
health care costs externalization through universal health care.

Freefall.... (5, Informative)

downix (84795) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682525)

I find it funny how it is always put "the Euro rsing against the dollar" or "the Canadian dollar rises against the US dollar" when the truth is the US dollar is in freefall, loosing value hand over fist. I wonder how long before the Peso overtakes us?

Wouldn't it be more accurate ... (0, Redundant)

xednieht (1117791) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682531)

to make the statement that the US Dollar has sunk to a new low?

Not bad for Canadian Business (2, Insightful)

saterdaies (842986) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682591)

It isn't necessarily bad for Canadian corporations. When something like this happens, it changes things. Canadian companies now get less money for final goods and services provided to Americans because of the exchange rate. BUT, Canadian companies can get intermediate things for cheaper. So, let's say that Bombardier (a Canadian train/plane manufacturer) buys components (like Aluminum) from the US. They get that cheaper. Then they sell that plane to the US which they earn less money for. That comes out as a wash. It really just shifts income from those who export to those who import. But in the long run, it doesn't even change that. As the demand for American goods in Canada rises, the price level of American goods will rise and along with it the currency. Things in economics tend toward equilibrium in the long run.

Re:Not bad for Canadian Business (1)

dami99 (1014687) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682745)

Not even close to being a "wash"... I work for a business very similar to one you describe, and we are losing a ton of money. We've been hedging with CD futures for awhile... but that's up soon.

New US $100 bill (1)

stox (131684) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682607)

to have a parachute built in. If we still had a $1000 bill, it would need retro-rockets.

Imagine the day all currencies are equal (0, Flamebait)

maillemaker (924053) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682631)

Imagine the reduction in social strife that will come the day that all the world's currencies are of equal value.

Re:Imagine the day all currencies are equal (1)

jjohnson (62583) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682713)

Why do you expect that this would have any effect on social strife?

Speaking as a Canadian (1)

boudie2 (1134233) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682643)

I can't understand why our dollar went from 62 cents
to parity (with me losing my good paying manufacturing
sector job) without any real fundamental changes in
the economy, or for that matter, the cost of things.
But then again, when you think of a "floating currency"
that doesn't make a lot of sense either.
So what, it's worth what people think it is? It's worth
one dollar U.S. because people are willing to pay that
much?
I do know one thing, every time it goes up or down,
SOMEBODY makes money. That's all I know.

Just got back (1)

stuntpope (19736) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682729)

I was in Ontario and Quebec last month, and though the official rate at the time was about 1 CAD = .94 USD, if you used US cash the vendors/businesses would treat it as 1 to 1, no change. But I noticed on the way home that the tollbooths in New York state had signs stating that Canadian currency would be treated as 80 percent of a dollar!

And by the way, I'd consider moving there, even given the currency parity.

buying a car (1)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682747)

We live in Toronto, my parents need a car and now I think they should go to the US and get one there. The interest rates there are very low, 1 our dollar can buy 1 dollar US and US car prices were always cheaper anyway. Now it looks we should buy everything in the States instead. Little headache on the bordre = probably 10-15K saved.

Best chart is not CAD versus USD (1)

dada21 (163177) | more than 5 years ago | (#20682763)

For me, I keep track of all the various currencies and commodities, and plot my own charts based on comparing two currencies in what they can buy in a given commodity. My favorite 4 commodities are gold (1 ounce), silver (20 ounce), oil (1 barrel) and a barrel of goods I created.

Every currency, over time, is being inflated via credit expansion or money expansion. This inflation of new currency or credit causes prices to go up in various markets. The graphics I talk about above show the destruction of money by the various scheming central banks. Some of my charts also recalculate currencies based on the daily trade ratio, so you can actually see when currencies trade at par, and the commodity graphs show all currencies falling moreso in the last 3 years.
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