Canada inflation rate edges to 2.3 pct on costlier gasoline

GBPUSD Daily Chart

Friday morning's report also says the average of the Bank of Canada's three measures of core inflation, which are created to leave out the noise of more-volatile items, was 2% last month.

"It was little bit lighter than market expectations it was a little bit more dovish than expected", said Derek Holt, head of capital markets at Scotiabank. "But to me, it still keeps May in play for the Bank of Canada".

On Wednesday, the Bank of Canada (BOC) left its benchmark interest rate steady at 1.25%, adopting a wait and see policy.

The country's inflation data is scrutinized by the Bank of Canada when it considers interest-rate decisions and inflation rate is now right in the range that the bank targets.

Canada's annual inflation rate strengthened by less than expected in March and February retail sales showed signs of weakness, disappointing markets and helping to push down the Canadian dollar.

USD/CAD is a quarter-cent lower on the day to 1.2646 but the drama has just begun. The currency touched its weakest level since April 9 at $1.2718.

Rising oil prices have been a major contributor to the hotter inflation readings of late, Mendes said in a research note to clients.

US crude prices were down 0.4 per cent at $68.03 a barrel.

The upward forces on inflation last month were led by higher costs for gasoline and air transportation, while cheaper prices for video equipment, digital devices and electricity applied downward pressure.

The gap between Canada's 2-year yield and its USA counterpart widened by 2.2 basis points to a spread of -52.0 basis points.

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