CANADA FX DEBT-C$ weaker as risk-adverse investors eye U.S. vote
* C$ at C$0.9967 vs US$, or $1.0033 * Investors seen paring back on riskier assets ahead of vote * Weak Canadian building data weighs on currency * Pending Greek austerity vote weighs on euro, global tone By Solarina Ho TORONTO, Nov 5 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar weakened slightly on Monday with investors seeking safety in less risky assets ahead of Tuesday's U.S. presidential election. The resource-linked currency tracked the cautious tone set by a raft of commodities as opinion polls showed the race between President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney remained neck-and-neck on the last day of campaigning. The uncertainty over the outcome left financial markets jittery. "The market's hesitant to make any significant directional bets on the currency," said Mazen Issa, macro strategist at TD Securities. The Canadian dollar finished the North American session at C$0.9967 to the greenback, or $1.0033, compared with C$0.9956, or $1.0044, at Friday's North American close. "The move in the Canadian dollar is consistent with the move in most of the currencies that trade as risk proxies," said Adam Cole, global head of foreign exchange strategy at Royal Bank of Canada. The presidential vote will be closely watched by financial markets. The future makeup of the U.S. Congress will also play a role in how the country deals with the so-called fiscal cliff - looming spending cuts and tax hikes that could push the world's largest economy into recession. "If Obama is re-elected, by and large you have a very similar structure as you have now. If Romney is elected, you're likely to see a change in some of the policy," said Issa. "I suspect overall though, the bigger issue is really after the election is completed. The focus turns to the fiscal cliff. That could move against the Canadian dollar." The currency also touched a session low after the value of Canadian building permits unexpectedly fell sharply in September, data from Statistics Canada showed. "A lot of it was coming through the non-residential side... You want to be concerned about whether or not some of these moves are particularly large within the residential sector," noted Issa. The value of building permits fell by an unexpectedly large 13.2 percent in September from August, dragged down by a major drop in the non-residential sector. But housing permits held steadier, rising 0.4 percent after two monthly decreases. Separately, Canada's federal housing agency said new homebuilding is expected to moderate further in the final quarter of 2012. RBC's Cole said that worries about a Greek vote on Wednesday over austerity measures was keeping the euro under pressure and adding to the more cautious overall tone. The Canadian currency strengthened to its highest level in almost three weeks against the euro. It also firmed against the British pound and the Swiss franc . The price of Canadian government debt was mixed, with the two-year bond down 1 Canadian cent to yield 1.072 percent, while the benchmark 10-year bond rose 9 Canadian cents to yield 1.760 percent.
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