$The Canadian dollar (symbol: $; code: CAD; dollar canadien) is the currency of Canada. It is abbreviated with the dollar sign $, there is no standard disambiguating form, but the abbreviation Can$ is often suggested by notable style guides for distinction from other dollar-denominated currencies. It is divided into 100 cents (¢).
Owing to the image of a common loon on its reverse, the dollar coin, and sometimes the unit of currency itself, are sometimes referred to as the loonie by English-speaking Canadians and foreign exchange traders and analysts.
Accounting for approximately 2% of all global reserves, the Canadian dollar is the fifth-most held reserve currency in the world, behind the U.S. dollar, the euro, the yen and sterling. The Canadian dollar is popular with central banks because of Canada's relative economic soundness, the Canadian government's strong sovereign position, and the stability of the country's legal and political systems.
Indigenous peoples have continuously inhabited what is now Canada for thousands of years. Beginning in the 16th century, British and French expeditions explored and later settled along the Atlantic coast. As a consequence of various armed conflicts, France ceded nearly all of its colonies in North America in 1763. In 1867, with the union of three British North American colonies through Confederation, Canada was formed as a federal dominion of four provinces. This began an accretion of provinces and territories and a process of increasing autonomy from the United Kingdom. This widening autonomy was highlighted by the Statute of Westminster 1931 and culminated in the Canada Act 1982, which severed the vestiges of legal dependence on the Parliament of the United Kingdom.