Canada PM says monetary policy appropriate -Bloomberg

OTTAWA Thu Jan 16, 2014 5:10pm EST

OTTAWA Jan 16 (Reuters) - Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper said on Thursday he was confident the Bank of Canada's monetary policy is appropriate and that the movement in the country's currency was less important than whether its level reflects economic realities, Bloomberg News reported.

"We have every reason to have confidence that the Bank of Canada has appropriate monetary policies in place," Harper said in an interview with the news agency.

The central bank has held its key rate at 1.0 percent since 2010. Governor Stephen Poloz, who has led the bank since July, abandoned a bias to raise rates last October and now describes the bank's stance as neutral.

The Canadian dollar has fallen steadily against the greenback since that October policy shift and touched a four-year low on Wednesday, bouncing back a little on Thursday.

The U.S. dollar has appreciated nearly 3 percent against the Canadian currency in the first two weeks of 2014.

Asked whether the Canadian dollar's current level is appropriate, Harper said: "We have confidence in the monetary authority and they are ultimately responsible for these issues."

Bloomberg quoted Harper as saying that what matters is whether the Canadian dollar is "at an appropriate level given various economic realities". He also said the weaker currency reflects the strength in the U.S. dollar, which he said had been undervalued.

A couple walks along the rough surf during sunset at Oahu's North Shore, December 26, 2013. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

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