BUSINESS

Scotiabank's monthly commodity price index plunges to lowest since January 2007

02/23/2015 10:50 EST | Updated 04/25/2015 05:59 EDT
TORONTO - Scotiabank's monthly index of commodity prices has plunged to its lowest since January 2007.

The bank says global economic conditions are better than during the 2008-09 global downturn, but an extended period of sub-par growth has increased competition and pushed down commodity prices.

Scotiabank says a recent spike in the U.S. dollar against most currencies has also contributed to the decline.

The bank's broadest commodity price index fell to 100.9 points in January, down 8.6 per cent from December and down 27.9 per cent from January 2013.

The oil and gas subindex had the biggest drop, falling by 21.5 per cent of the one-month period. Indexes covering the mining, forestry and agriculture sectors also fell.

Scotiabank says a benchmark price for Canadian heavy oil — which usually trades at a discount to other types of crude — dropped to US$30.49 per barrel, down from US$43.28 in December and a 2014 high of US$86.57 in June.