CANADA FX DEBT-Canadian dollar posts its biggest gain of 2020 on global stimulus hopes

 (Adds details on activity and updates prices)
    * Canadian dollar strengthens 0.4% against the greenback
    * Price of U.S. oil settles up 4.5%
    * Canadian manufacturing activity expands in February
    * Canada's 10-year yield hits lowest since October 2016 at

    By Fergal Smith
    TORONTO, March 2 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar rose
against its U.S. counterpart on Monday, notching its biggest
gain since the start of the year, as investors bet that global
central banks would try to ease the economic impact of the
coronavirus outbreak.
    At 2:58 p.m. (1958 GMT), the Canadian dollar          was
trading 0.4% higher at 1.3353 to the greenback, or 74.89 U.S.
cents, its biggest gain since Dec. 31 last year. The currency,
which on Friday hit its weakest intraday level in nearly nine
months at 1.3465, traded in a range of 1.3315 to 1.3445.     
    The loonie is rallying for the same reason as equity
markets, said Phil Mesman, head of fixed income at Picton
Mahoney Asset Management.
    "The markets are pricing in (coordinated) central bank
intervention," Mesman said.
    U.S. stocks and the price of oil, one of Canada's major
exports, climbed on hopes of central bank stimulus and of a
deeper cut in output by OPEC. U.S. crude oil futures       
settled 4.5% higher at $46.75 a barrel.                         
    Canadian manufacturing activity expanded in February at the
quickest pace in a year, data showed, which could provide some
reassurance to the Bank of Canada on the outlook for the economy
ahead of an interest rate decision on Wednesday.              
    Investors are betting that the central bank will cut rates
for the first time in nearly five years.                       
    Canadian government bond yields fell across the yield curve
in sympathy with U.S. Treasuries. The 10-year yield was down 8.9
basis points at 1.034%. It touched its lowest intraday level
since October 2016 at 1.027%.
    Canadian authorities reached a tentative deal on Sunday with
an indigenous group in the Pacific Coast province of British
Columbia that could end solidarity protests across Canada that
have been blocking rail lines and roads for weeks.              

 (Reporting by Fergal Smith; Editing by David Gregorio and Peter