March 8, 2018 / 2:36 PM / 4 months ago

CANADA FX DEBT-C$ steadies as trade fears cool, jobs data looms

    * Canadian dollar at C$1.2908, or 77.47 U.S. cents
    * Bond prices slightly higher across much of the yield curve
    * 10-year yield touched its highest intraday since Feb. 28

    TORONTO, March 8 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar was little
changed against its U.S. counterpart on Thursday as fears of a
trade war ebbed, crude oil prices steadied and investors looked
ahead to U.S. and Canadian jobs data due on Friday.
    U.S. President Donald Trump was expected later in the day to
sign a proclamation imposing 25 percent tariffs on steel imports
and 10 percent on aluminum. But prospects of exemptions for key
trading partners, including Canada, has calmed financial
markets.             
    On Wednesday, the Bank of Canada called trade policy an
"important and growing source of uncertainty for the global and
Canadian outlooks," as it left its benchmark interest rate
unchanged at 1.25 percent.             
    The central bank has raised interest rates three times since
July and Canada's employment report for February can help guide
expectations for further hikes. Economists in a Reuters poll
expect jobs to rebound 20,000 after slumping 88,000 in January.
    Data from Statistics Canada on Thursday showed that the
value of Canadian building permits jumped 5.6 percent in January
from December, while new home prices were flat for a second
month in a row.                         
    At 9:18 a.m. EST (1418 GMT), the Canadian dollar         
was little changed at C$1.2908 to the greenback, or 77.47 U.S.
cents.
    The currency traded in a range of C$1.2868 to C$1.2952. On
Wednesday, the loonie matched Monday's low at C$1.3002, its
weakest since July 5.
    The price of oil, one of Canada's major exports, was broadly
steady on Thursday but still set to slip over the week for the
second time in a row against a backdrop of rising U.S. crude
production and an increase in inventories.             
    U.S. crude        prices were up 0.2 percent at $61.25 a
barrel. 
    Canadian government bond prices were slightly higher across
much of the yield curve, with the two-year            up 0.5
Canadian cent to yield 1.776 percent and the 10-year            
rising 6 Canadian cents to yield 2.23 percent.
    The 10-year yield touched its highest since Feb. 28 at 2.246
percent.

 (Reporting by Fergal Smith; Editing by David Gregorio)
  
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