CANADA FX DEBT-C$ rides oil prices and banks to higher close

Thu Feb 26, 2009 4:44pm EST
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* C$ edges higher to close at 79.80 U.S. cents

* Rebounds from retreat in previous session

* Greenback relinquished some safe-haven flows

* Bond prices end narrowly mixed across the curve (Recasts with comments and closing numbers)

By Frank Pingue

TORONTO, Feb 26 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar closed higher on Thursday thanks to a combination of higher oil prices, upbeat earnings from domestic banks and a U.S. budget that calmed safe-haven flows to the greenback.

Three of Canada's largest banks reported quarterly earnings that, excluding one-time items, topped expectations and showed that profits at domestic banks have been less damaged by the financial crisis than U.S. lenders. [ID:nN26542233]

"You've had good reports from a couple of Canadian banks that topped earnings estimates which suggests that the Canadian banking sector isn't nearly in the dire straits that the U.S. (banking sector) is," said Charmaine Buskas, senior economics strategist ad TD Securities.

"At the same time, you've had oil post a modest rally which we haven't seen in a while so that's also good news for the Canadian dollar."   Continued...