CANADA FX DEBT-C$ weakens, but seen in range ahead of data

Wed May 21, 2014 9:35am EDT

* Canadian dollar at C$1.0921 or 91.57 U.S. cents
    * Bond prices lower across the maturity curve

    By Leah Schnurr
    TORONTO, May 21 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar weakened
modestly against the greenback on Wednesday but was expected to
stick to its recent trading range as investors looked ahead to
key domestic economic data reports due for release later in the
week.
    In May so far, the Canadian dollar has largely traded
sideways as analysts weigh modestly improving data against a
Bank of Canada that has maintained its neutral policy stance.
    Figures for retail sales for March and inflation for April
will be released on Thursday and Friday, respectively.
    "We certainly have consolidated within a range, so we're
bouncing back and forth," said David Tulk, chief Canada macro
strategist at TD Securities in Toronto.
    "From that perspective, we'll look to retail sales tomorrow
to maybe break out of some of that very tight range, but even
sitting at C$1.0912 right now, we're probably only going to see
something up toward maybe C$1.10 or so if we get a really
disappointing retail sales print."
    TD expects retail sales will dip 0.1 percent on the month,
weaker than the consensus forecast for a 0.3 percent gain. 
    The Canadian dollar was at C$1.0921 to the
greenback, or 91.57 U.S. cents, weaker than Tuesday's close of
C$1.0899, or 91.75 U.S. cents.
    Investors will also be focusing on monetary policy south of
the border, with the minutes from the Federal Reserve's most
recent meeting due to be released in the afternoon. 
    A number of Fed officials will also be speaking on
Wednesday, including Chair Janet Yellen, though her speech is
not expected to impact markets as she will be giving a
commencement address to New York University graduates. 
    The Fed has been gradually winding down its massive
bond-purchase program that it undertook to boost the economy,
and investors are keen for insight into when the central bank
may start raising interest rates.
    New York Federal Reserve President William Dudley said on
Tuesday the Fed should be able to raise rates slowly when it
eventually tightens policy. 
    "That prevailing theme of dovishness should certainly carry
the day, so it's going to be hard to get much more strength in
the U.S. dollar over the course of today," said Tulk. "So I
think we're probably going to stay in these ranges until we get
some of that made-in-Canada data tomorrow and Friday."
    Canadian government bond prices were lower across the
maturity curve, with the two-year down 1.7 Canadian
cents to yield 1.052 percent and the benchmark 10-year
 off 20 Canadian cents to yield 2.303 percent.

 (Editing by Bernadette Baum)
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