CANADA FX DEBT-C$ firms after U.S. data

Wed Aug 15, 2012 9:17am EDT
 
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* C$ at C$0.9910 vs US$, or $1.0091
    * U.S. data keeps Fed stimulus hopes alive
    * Bond prices mostly lower

    By Jon Cook
    TORONTO, Aug 15 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar firmed
against its U.S. counterpart on Wednesday, and advanced against
other major risk currencies, after U.S. data kept alive hopes of
further stimulus moves by the U.S. Federal Reserve.
    The Canadian and U.S. currencies were still receiving a
boost against most of their global peers after Tuesday's
stronger-than-expected U.S. retail sales numbers sparked hope
the world's largest economy was shaking off its summer doldrums.
 
    "We are seeing continued outperformance of North American
currencies," said Audrey Childe-Freeman, head of foreign
exchange strategy for BMO Capital Markets in London. 
    The Canadian dollar touched a session high at
C$0.9907 versus the U.S. dollar, or $1.0094 after data on
Wednesday showed U.S. consumer prices were flat in July for the
second straight month, giving the Federal Reserve room for
further monetary stimulus. 
    Meanwhile, a gauge of manufacturing in New York state
unexpectedly contracted in August for the first time since
October 2011.     
    The Canadian dollar was also notably stronger versus other
risk currencies, touching a one-month high against the
Australian dollar.
    The Australian dollar was hurt after Moody's
ratings agency said it might eventually downgrade the credit
ratings of some Australian states. 
    "I like to play the bullish Canadian dollar view on the
crosses and in particular against the Aussie dollar," said
Childe-Freeman.
    Trading volumes were light, however, due to the Northern
Hemisphere summer holiday, with markets in a number of European
countries shut for the Assumption Day holiday.
    Around 9 a.m. ET (1300 GMT), Canada's dollar was at C$0.9910
versus the U.S. dollar, or $1.0091, up from Tuesday's close at
C$0.9919 versus the greenback, or $1.0082.
    Childe-Freeman said further positive North American economic
signs could see the Canadian dollar breach the C$0.99 level
against the U.S. currency, which it last did at the beginning of
May, before the crisis in Europe intensified.
    "Once the market moves away from worrying about European
systemic risk and shifts attention back onto yield and central
bank policy, I think the Canadian dollar is extremely well
positioned."
    Canadian bond prices were mostly lower. The two-year bond
 slipped 3 Canadian cents to yield 1.202 percent, and
the benchmark 10-year bond fell 31 Canadian cents to
yield 1.893 percent.