CANADA FX DEBT-C$ firms slightly on positive market sentiment

Mon May 6, 2013 4:58pm EDT

* C$ at C$1.0068 vs US$, or 99.32 U.S. cents
    * March building permits surge past expectations
    * Ivey PMI data weaker than expected
    * Canadian employment data on Friday in focus
    * Bond prices fall across curve

    By Solarina Ho
    TORONTO, May 6 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar was
marginally stronger against its U.S. counterpart on Monday,
tracking positive market sentiment following Friday's surprising
U.S. monthly jobs report.
    The benchmark S&P 500 index edged up to another record
closing high on Wall Street, extending Friday's rally after U.S.
employment rose more than expected last month. 
 
    The loonie strengthened after the release of Canadian
building permits data, which surged past expectations in March,
though the closely-watched residential, single family component
was more subdued. 
    "Once again, it's a situation where on the surface, things
look good for the Canadian dollar, but the domestic factors
really weren't that strong, so lets chalk this up to basic
risk-on move," said Mark Chandler, head of Canadian fixed-income
and currency strategy at RBC Capital Markets.
    The Canadian dollar, which was stronger against
other major currencies, finished its North American session at
C$1.0068 against the U.S. dollar, or 99.32 U.S. cents, weaker
than Friday's close at C$1.0078, or 99.23 U.S. cents.
    The Canadian currency weakened briefly following the release
of Ivey Purchasing Managers Index data that showed the pace of
business purchasing slowed more severely than expected in April.
 
    The currency's movements were expected to be mostly subdued
until Friday's Canadian employment data. The report is expected
to show the economy added 15,000 jobs in April, while the
unemployment rate held steady at 7.2 percent, according to a
Reuters survey of analysts.
    "We're going to wait until Friday's employment numbers in
Canada before things get a little bit more exciting on the
Canadian dollar front," Benjamin Reitzes, senior economist and
foreign exchange strategist at BMO Capital Markets.
    Reitzes said currency traders are also looking for more
clues on what newly appointed Bank of Canada Governor Stephen
Poloz will say about monetary policy. 
    RBC's Chandler said Canadian housing data could be a
potential hiccup, while the Reserve Bank of Australia, which
meets on Tuesday, may cut its benchmark interest rate.
    "We'll see if there's any contagion spillover to the
Canadian dollar that might take some of the steam out of it
right here," he added.
    Prices for Canadian government bonds were lower across the
curve. The two-year bond fell 2.5 Canadian cents to
yield 0.977 percent, while the benchmark 10-year bond
 fell 28 Canadian cents to yield 1.801 percent.
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