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