01/05/2015 10:05 EST | Updated 03/07/2015 05:59 EST

Canadian dollar below 85 cents US as oil price flirts with $50

The Canadian dollar was lower early today, dragged below the 85 cent US level because of continuing weakness in the price of oil, which was threatening to dip below $50 US a barrel for the first time since 2009.

The loonie dropped to its lowest point since May 2009 early in the trading day, changing hands at 84.90. Much of that is because of strength in the U.S. dollar — as opposed to weakness in the loonie — because the U.S. greenback has been gaining ground against virtually every other world currency for several weeks now.

The euro hit a nine-year low against the U.S. dollar on Monday, trading under 1.20 for the first time since 2005.

But some of the loonie's weakness was the same old story: an oil price that can't seem to find a bottom.

The price for a barrel of the benchmark North American oil known as WTI lost almost $2 on Monday and traded down to $50.91.

That's the first time oil has been that low since the summer of 2009, when the world economy was just starting to come out of a devastating recession.