UPDATE 1-Foreigners reduce Canadian securities holdings in December

Tue Feb 17, 2015 8:40am EST
 
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OTTAWA Feb 17 (Reuters) - Foreign investors reduced their holdings in Canadian securities by C$13.5 billion ($10.9 billion) in December, the biggest decrease since June 2013, shedding bonds and equities, Statistics Canada reported on Tuesday.

Non-resident investors reduced their holdings of bonds by C$8.5 billion as Canadian dollar-denominated government and corporate bonds were retired. The rest of investors' divestments were almost equally split between provincial government bonds, government business enterprise bonds and private corporate bonds.

Foreign investors decreased their ownership of Canadian equities by C$7.0 billion, the biggest reduction since February 2013. Still, the decline followed the purchase of C$32.3 billion in Canadian stocks from January to November of last year.

Foreign investment in the Canadian money market was C$2.0 billion, tempering December's divestments. For 2014, overall non-resident investment was C$59.8 billion, stronger than 2013's C$43.1 billion.

Canadians bought the most foreign securities in 14 years in December, acquiring C$13.9 billion worth, with investment in U.S. securities accounting for the bulk of the activity. Canadian investment in foreign shares amounted to C$35.7 billion last year, the biggest annual acquisition since 2000, with nearly two-thirds in non-U.S. foreign shares. ($1 = $1.24 Canadian) (Reporting by Leah Schnurr; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)