CANADA FX DEBT-C$ follows crude prices lower
(Updates with details, comment, and closing figures) * Canadian dollar at C$1.1296, or 88.53 U.S. cents * Bond prices higher across the maturity curve By Solarina Ho TORONTO, Nov 17 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar eased against its U.S. counterpart on Monday, tracking weaker oil prices, while the market awaited the midweek release of the minutes of the U.S. Federal Reserve Board's last policy meeting. The commodities-linked Canadian dollar has been pivoting around the C$1.13 level in recent sessions, often taking direction from the price of crude, a major Canadian export. Oil prices have dropped to four-year lows on concerns about an oil glut amid signs of slowing global growth. Brent and U.S. crude prices finished lower on Monday following news that Japan, the world's fourth-biggest crude importer, had slipped into recession. "The $1.13 (level) has acted like a very good magnet ... Just in the absence of any fresh economic indicator to really drive direction one way or the other," said Scott Smith, senior market analyst at Cambridge Mercantile Group in Calgary. The Canadian dollar closed Monday's session at C$1.1296 to the U.S. dollar, or 88.53 U.S. cents, weaker than Friday's finish of C$1.1277, or 88.68 U.S. cents. Smith said he expects the loonie to trade between C$1.1275 and C$1.1350 in the short term. Market participants will likely keep to the sidelines until the Fed minutes are released on Wednesday, he said. In Canada, the next major economic news will be CPI data, due on Friday. There was some lower tier economic data on Monday: foreign investment in Canadian securities fell by more than half in September from August and sales of existing homes in Canada edged higher in October from September. But the figures did not have measurable impact on the loonie. Currency watchers have noted the Canadian dollar has performed reasonably well against the greenback relative to other currencies. "Generally the data's been quite good in Canada, so I think that has allowed the Canadian dollar hold its own against what's been a very pro-U.S. dollar trend over the past number of weeks," said Don Mikolich, executive director, foreign exchange sales, at CIBC World Markets. Canadian government bond prices were higher across the maturity curve, with the two-year bond up half a Canadian cent, yielding 1.005 percent. The benchmark 10-year was up 8 Canadian cents to yield 2.025 percent. (Reporting by Solarina Ho Editing by W Simon and Peter Galloway)
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