CANADA FX DEBT-C$ tests 2009 lows as falling crude prices weigh

Wed Dec 10, 2014 4:55pm EST
 
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(Updates with details, fresh comment, closing figures)
    * Canadian dollar at C$1.1480 or 87.11 U.S. cents
    * Bond prices higher across the maturity curve

    By Solarina Ho
    TORONTO, Dec 10 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar retreated
against its U.S. counterpart on Wednesday, as crude prices
tumbled after an OPEC forecast of sinking demand next year and
data showed a spike in U.S. inventories.
    Comments by Saudi Arabia, which reiterated its plans to
maintain output, added to the pressure. Earlier, the
Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries said in a
monthly report that it expects demand for its oil to be 280,000
barrels per day lower in 2015 that it had forecast previously. 
    Canada is a major oil producer and the Canadian dollar is
sensitive to moves in crude prices. U.S. crude prices edged near
$60 a barrel, falling to five-year lows.  
    "Cad is being closely pushed around with crude oil prices,"
said Mazen Issa, a macro strategist with TD Securities.
    "In recent days and weeks, it's been moving around with
fluctuations in oil. That is really the hot topic to end the
year and probably as we go into 2015, that will be talking point
or theme for next year as well."
     The Canadian dollar, which underperformed most of
its counterparts, ended the day at C$1.1480 to the U.S. dollar,
or 87.11 U.S. cents, weaker than Tuesday's finish of C$1.1440,
or 87.41 U.S. cents. The currency briefly touched a key
psychological level, C$1.1503, its weakest since July 2009.
    Greg Moore, senior currency strategist at Royal Bank of
Canada, said there was a chance the loonie could break through
C$1.15 again in the coming days, and he added that the
volatility of oil prices raises the possibility that the
Canadian dollar will close the year weaker than C$1.15.
    The currency remained range bound after the release of the
Bank of Canada's Financial System Review. The central bank said
risks to the country's financial system remained steady with a
stronger U.S. recovery expected to help keep Canada's economy
out of trouble. 
    Canadian government bond prices were higher across the
maturity curve with the two-year bond up half a
Canadian cent, yielding 0.980 percent, and the benchmark 10-year
bond jumping 45 Canadian cents to yield 1.830
percent.

 (Editing by Peter Galloway and Steve Orlofsky)