CANADA FX DEBT-C$ steady near 5-1/2 year lows as oil keeps sliding

Tue Jan 13, 2015 10:15am EST
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* Canadian dollar at C$1.1958 or 83.63 U.S. cents
    * Bond prices mixed across the maturity curve

    By Solarina Ho
    TORONTO, Jan 13 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar was steady
against the U.S. dollar on Tuesday but came within a
hairsbreadth of weakening to the key  C$1.20 mark as crude
prices continued to crumble.
    The United Arab Emirates' energy minister stood firm on the
Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries' (OPEC)
decision not to scale back output despite an excess of supply
and on OPEC's insistence that other higher-cost producers be the
ones to reduce their output.  
    Oil, a major Canadian export, was approaching $44 a barrel,
about 60 percent below the highs of June 2014 and its lowest
price in nearly six years.
    "It's a one-way ride," said Mark Chandler, head of Canadian
fixed income and currency strategy at RBC Capital Markets.
"Although (the Canadian dollar is) actually relatively stable
this morning ... But ultimately the weakness in oil prices is
still directing the moves."
    At 9:32 a.m. (1432 GMT), the Canadian dollar was at
C$1.1958 to the greenback, or 83.63 U.S. cents, little changed
from Monday's finish of C$1.1967, or 83.56 U.S. cents.
    The loonie was outperforming most major currencies although
at one point during the session it touched as low as C$1.1993,
or 83.38 U.S. cents, its weakest level since April 2009. RBC
expects the currency to trade between C$1.1940 and C$1.2020 on
    Bank of Canada Deputy Governor Tim Lane will speak later in
the session about oil prices and their impact on the economy, an
event that Chandler said will likely dictate the direction of
the Canadian dollar on Tuesday.
    Canadian government bond prices were mixed across the
maturity curve, with longer-term maturities falling. The
two-year bond was down 1.5 Canadian cents to yield
0.929 percent and the benchmark 10-year was off 23
Canadian cents to yield 1.629 percent.

 (Reporting by Solarina Ho; Editing by Peter Galloway)