Canadian Dollar

The Canadian Dollar, abbreviated as CAD, is the official currency of Canada. The symbol for this currency is the Can$ or C$ to represent the Canadian version of the Dollar and to differentiate it from other dollar-denominated currencies in the world. The one-dollar coin in Canada features the image of a loon. From there, it has earned the nickname of loonie from foreign exchange traders and analysts.

If you are traveling to Canada, it is important to learn a little bit of information about the currency you are using while there. Despite the fact that this currency is exclusively used in Canada, it is the 5th most held reserve currency in the world. In fact, it comprises 2% of the global currency reserve. The other currencies above it are the US Dollar, Euro, Yen, and Pound Sterling.

The relative economic success that Canada has experienced for many centuries is one of the reasons why it is popular with central banks all over the world. In addition to its economic stability, Canada is also known for its strong sovereign position and for having a strong legal and political system in place.

It is easy to distinguish the Canadian dollar (especially the bills) from the US Dollar. The Canadian Dollar bills feature bright colors, which is easily distinguishable from the white and green bills of the US. In 2011, the Canadian federal government has replaced the paper bills with polymer banknotes. This is a step to securing the currency and ensure that no counterfeiting will be done.

Coins and Bank Notes

The coins are produced by the Royal Canadian Mint in Winnipeg, Ottawa, and Manitoba. The coins feature the following denominations: 5 cents or nickel, 10 cents or dime, 25 cents or quarter, 50 cents (it is no longer being distributed and is therefore rarely seen in circulation), 1 dollar or loonie, and two dollars or toonie. The 1 cent or penny was no longer minted and has ceased distributed in 2013.

Canadian Dollar

As for the banknotes, they were first issued by chartered banks in the 1830s. Before the founding of the Bank of Canada in 1934,  there were only 10 chartered banks that were issuing notes for the Canadian Dollar. There were many design changes incorporated into the banknotes over the years, but the latest design was released in 2011. It was also during this same time when the material used for the printing of banknotes was changed to polymer substrate (from cotton fiber). Some of the bills that were printed using polymer were released into circulation in 2011 and then later in 2012 and 2013.

Interesting Facts about the Canadian Dollar

Here are some interesting facts that you need to know about the Canadian Dollar:

  • Aside from loonie, the Canadian Dollar is also known by a few other nicknames such as piastre, buck and Huard.,
  • Some of the most frequently used bank notes in this currency are $5, $10, $20 and $50. The $100 bank note is rarely used. The $1 and $2 bills have already been replaced with coins.
  • As of 2015, the inflation rate for the Canadian Dollar is at 1.06%.
  • The Bank of Canada is the central bank institution that governs the circulation of the currency within the country.
  • This currency is only being used by Canada.
  • If you are traveling to Canada from the US, you can use your US dollar to transact as some of the businesses near the border accepts US Dollars. However, it is important to take note about the difference in the exchange rate especially when compared to banks.