CANADA FX DEBT-Canadian dollar constrained in tight range
* C$ closes down at $1.0116
* Bond prices underperform U.S. Treasuries (Updates to close, adds details, quotes)
By Claire Sibonney
TORONTO, Feb 14 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar slipped from its highest level in more than a week against the U.S. currency on Monday, but stayed trapped in a tight range as investors awaited new signals on direction.
It rose as high as C$0.9848 to the U.S. dollar, or $1.0154, early in the day, its highest level since Feb. 4. but recoiled quickly. Without any economic news to signal a path, the currency was constrained in a narrow 54-basis-point range.
The euro's fall on Monday weakened market sentiment and the other usual drivers of the currency, oil futures and U.S. equities, were soft and did little to inspire Canadian dollar buying. [O/R] [.N]
"I don't think there's anything right now in the market to move the Canadian dollar either way," said Francois Barriere, vice president of international markets at Laurentian Bank of Canada in Montreal.
"It's difficult because it doesn't seem to follow any regular pattern whether it's correlated to oil, or gold, or stock markets ... like the recent past, or the events happening in the Middle East."
Barriere said the Canadian dollar will eventually move more on its own fundamentals than on global macro factors.
"It will probably start to move on its own data, and its own data as far as I'm concerned are not that strong ... except for employment, which is pretty decent in Canada."
The next significant economic figures are U.S. inflation figures on Thursday, and the Canadian January inflation report on Friday.
But Barriere said the inflation numbers are unlikely to dramatically raise concerns about unexpected Bank of Canada or U.S. Federal Reserve interest-rate moves.
The Canadian dollar CAD=D4 closed at C$0.9885 to the U.S. dollar, or $1.0116, slightly down from Friday's North American session close at C$0.9868 to the U.S. dollar, or $1.0134.
Michael O'Neill, managing director at Knightsbridge Foreign Exchange, said the technicals on the Canadian dollar were still bullish, noting another test of C$0.9850 area was possible. If that is broken, he said he was eyeing C$0.9830, which is two ticks firmer than the 2011 high. He put U.S. dollar resistance at C$0.9890.
Canadian government bonds were weaker across the curve, and underperformed U.S. Treasuries although benchmark U.S. yields remained just under record highs. [US/]
The two-year Canadian government bond CA2YT=RR was off 7 Canadian cents to yield 1.939 percent, while the 10-year bond CA10YT=RR fell 12 Canadian cents to yield 3.487 percent. (Additional reporting by Ka Yan Ng; editing by Peter Galloway)
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