CANADA FX DEBT-C$ hits 6-year lows as greenback firms, oil weighs
* Canadian dollar at C$1.3041 or 76.68 U.S. cents * Bond prices mixed across the maturity curve TORONTO, July 22 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar resumed its decline against the greenback on Wednesday after a brief reprieve the previous session, softening to more than six-year lows as the U.S. dollar firmed against a basket of key currencies and oil prices remained under pressure. Prices for oil, a key Canadian export, failed to hold on to Tuesday's gains, and at one point fell below $50 a barrel following an unexpected rise in U.S. crude stockpiles. The rise added to the world oversupply that has sent crude prices tumbling over the past year. Many market participants expect the loonie to weaken further against the U.S. dollar this year, particularly as the U.S. Federal Reserve prepares to resume raising interest rates, possibly in September. * At 9:57 a.m. EDT (1357 GMT), the Canadian dollar, which was weaker than most of its key currency counterparts, was at C$1.3041 to the U.S. dollar, or 76.68 U.S. cents, weaker than the Bank of Canada's official close of C$1.2948, or 77.23 U.S. cents, on Tuesday. * The currency's weakest trade was C$1.3046. Currency players are eyeing the C$1.3063/66 level, last hit on March 9, 2009, which was Canadian dollar's weakest level since 2004. * Canadian retail sales figures for May are due at 8:30 a.m. EDT (1230 GMT) on Thursday. Economists are expecting an increase of 0.5 percent. * U.S. crude prices were down 1.55 percent at $50.07, while Brent crude lost 1.19 percent to $56.36. * Canadian government bond prices were mixed across the maturity curve, with the two-year price down 0.5 Canadian cent to yield 0.43 percent and the benchmark 10-year rising 19 Canadian cents to yield 1.541 percent. * The Canada-U.S. two-year bond spread was -26.4 basis points, while the 10-year spread was -78.7 basis points. (Reporting by Solarina Ho; Editing by Peter Galloway)
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