CANADA FX DEBT-C$ holds steady in narrow range; BOC successor in focus
* C$ unchanged at C$1.0263 vs US$, or 97.44 U.S. cents * New Bank of Canada governor announcement anticipated * Canadian retail sales on Tues and U.S. Q1 GDP key data this week By Solarina Ho TORONTO, April 22 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar was little changed versus the U.S. dollar on Monday, following a dismal prior week, with a dearth of economic data and news keeping the currency on hold. Equity markets were given a boost after the Group of 20 countries over the weekend stopped short of criticizing the radical easing steps which the Bank of Japan says are aimed at battling deflation, with any currency weakness simply a byproduct. The commodities-linked Canadian dollar was trading in a tight 21-point range between C$1.0248 and C$1.0269 after weakening off 1.2 percent last week in reaction to plunging commodity prices. Outgoing Bank of Canada Governor Mark Carney also slashed growth forecasts last Wednesday, which added to some of the currency's weakness. "Last week was a pretty big week for us in terms of domestic events with the (Bank of Canada's Monetary Policy Report) and so on," said Mark Chandler, head of Canadian fixed income and currency strategy at Royal Bank of Canada. "The G20 meeting, if anything, gives the green light for the Bank of Japan to continue to have accommodative policy. That's underpinned a bit of a risk-on tone and generally helped riskier commodity-based currencies such as Canada, but it's very, very, very small." At 9:05 a.m. (1305 GMT) Canada's dollar was trading at C$1.0263 against the U.S. dollar or 97.44 U.S. cents, unchanged from Friday's close. The Canadian dollar's performance was mixed against other major currencies. Looking ahead, retail sales on Tuesday will be the main economic data for Canada this week while first-quarter GDP figures on Friday will be the key U.S. data. "If there's anything that's waiting out there for the Canadian dollar it's probably the announcement of a new Bank of Canada governor," said Chandler. Current deputy Tiff Macklem is unanimously expected to be the successor to Carney, according to a Reuters poll. Should there be a surprise appointment, there is a risk of the Canadian dollar weakening, said Chandler. Canadian government bond prices were mixed, with the two-year bond unchanged with a yield of 0.940 percent, while the benchmark 10-year bond shed 2 Canadian cents to yield 1.713 percent.
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