Financial business chart and economic development

The loonie jumped nearly three-quarters of a cent today following comments by the U.S. Treasury Secretary that a weaker greenback is good, as the Toronto Stock Exchange’s key index lost ground.

The Canadian dollar closed at an average trading value of US81.03 cents, up 0.73 of a U.S. cent.

Speaking this morning at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said he’s not concerned with the recent weakening of the U.S. dollar because when the currency goes down, it makes U.S. goods less expensive in other markets.

The S&P/TSX composite index was down 73.34 points to 16,284.21, despite a rally in oil and gold prices.

The March crude contract soared US$1.14 to US$65.61 per barrel and the February bullion contract climbed US$19.60 to US$1,356.30 an ounce.

In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average was up 41.31 points to 26,252.12. The S&P 500 index edged back 1.59 points to 2,837.54 and the Nasdaq composite index was down 45.23 points to 7,415.06.

Elsewhere in commodities, the March natural gas contract added US4¢ to US$3.08 per mmBTU and the March copper contract gained US12¢ to US$3.23 a pound.