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Bank of Canada announces details of forthcoming changes to its published foreign exchange rate data

The Bank of Canada today announced a final list of the 26 foreign currency exchange rates that it will continue to publish after 1 March 2017. The Bank also released the new calculation methodology that will be used for these rates.

The 26 currencies to be published effective 1 March are: (in alphabetical order):

1. Australian dollar

2. Brazilian real

3. Chinese renminbi

4. European euro

5. Hong Kong dollar

6. Indian rupee

7. Indonesian rupiah

8. Japanese yen

9. Malaysian ringgit

10. Mexican peso

11. New Zealand dollar

12. Norwegian krone

13. Peruvian new sol

14. Russian ruble

15. Saudi riyal

16. Singapore dollar

17. South African rand

18. South Korean won

19. Swedish krona

20. Swiss franc

21. Taiwanese dollar

22. Thai baht

23. Turkish lira

24. UK pound sterling

25. US dollar

26. Vietnamese dong

This list of currencies captures the vast majority of foreign exchange transactions conducted against the Canadian dollar and reflects the combination of the top 20 currencies by trading volume (based on the Bank for International Settlements Triennial FX Turnover Survey) and those of Canada’s top 20 trading partners (based on Statistics Canada’s International Merchandise Trade data). This list will be reviewed and adjusted, if required, every three years.

These new FX rates will be published once a day, by 16:30 ET, in the form of a single indicative rate per currency pair, which represents a daily average rate for that currency against the Canadian dollar.  

To allow time for users of the Bank’s FX rates to make any necessary adjustments, the Bank plans to publish these new FX rates alongside our existing FX rates between 1 March and 28 April 2017.

As of 1 May 2017, the Bank will publish exchange rate data as described above for only these 26 currencies. It will cease publishing all other existing exchange rates, including noon and closing, high and low, and all forward exchange rates and forward points. However, it will continue to publish monthly and annual averages, as well as the Canadian-dollar effective exchange rate index (CERI).

When these changes are implemented on 1 March 2017, the Exchange Rate section of the Bank’s website will be reformatted, which may result in some data being relocated.

Additional notes

  1. In February 2016, the Bank announced its intention to make a series of changes to the number, frequency and calculation methodology of its published foreign exchange (FX) rates, effective 1 March 2017. These changes reinforce the distinction between FX rate fixings used as benchmarks for transactional purposes and Bank of Canada exchange rates that are provided as a public good—for statistical, analytical and informational purposes only.
  1. Changes to the FX rates published by the Bank of Canada are being implemented after wide public consultation (including almost 17,000 responses to a 2014 survey), and are being undertaken in the context of broader international official sector work on the design of foreign exchange reference rates.
  1. The Bank began publishing exchange rates when FX markets were much less transparent than they are now. Over time, the emergence of electronic trading platforms has greatly improved pricing transparency for both market participants and the broader public. Exchange rates are now readily available, either continuously (real-time) or at a specific point in time, from multiple trading platforms, various internet-based sources and numerous data vendors.
  1. For more information, please consult the following Background Information.