Canadian manufacturing shipments were better than forecast in January, as were wholesale sales. However, it was Tuesday's retail sales data that brought a sparkle to the Loonie's eyes: They were up by 2.2%, not quite twice as much as expected but close to that. Unfortunately, the data appeared on a day when investors were not feeling well-disposed to so-called "risky" investments such as equities and commodity currencies. They were fretting about the US administration's focus on travel bans and healthcare bills and its failure to wheel out the stimulus measures upon which they had been pinning their hopes. The Loonie did even less well than the US dollar, losing quarter of a cent, and it lost two and a quarter cents to sterling.

The pound's saviour was UK inflation, which came in higher than expected at 2.3%. At that level, investors assume the Bank of England must at least be thinking of higher interest rates.