CANADA FX DEBT-Canadian government bond yields hit 2-year highs
* Bond prices mixed, lower across long-term end of curve * Fed minutes, Canadian retail sales, CPI in focus this week * C$ at C$1.0342 vs US$, or 96.69 U.S. cents By Solarina Ho TORONTO, Aug 19 (Reuters) - Prices for Canadian government debt were lower across longer end of the maturity curve on Monday as the markets waited for further direction from the U.S. Federal Reserve's policy meeting minutes, retail sales and inflation data later this week. The two-year bond slipped half a Canadian cent to yield 1.221 percent and the benchmark 10-year bond fell 23 Canadian cents to yield 2.743 percent, its highest yield in more than two years. Yields on the Canadian government's 20-year and 30-year bonds also touched the highest levels in more than two years. Meanwhile, the Canadian dollar has been mostly pushed and pulled by U.S. data and Federal Reserve commentary and was little changed against its U.S. counterpart. Minutes of the Fed's most recent policy meeting due out this week are expected to provide better clarity on when the central bank will begin to scale back its stimulus program. "Realistically, we're waiting for the next major Fed move and we'll follow the market. It's not about Canada, it's about everything else," said John Curran, senior vice president at CanadianForex. "It's range-bound until further notice." The Canadian dollar finished its North American session at C$1.0342 vs. the greenback, or 96.69 U.S. cents, nearly flat from Friday's session finish at C$1.0339, or 96.72 U.S. cents. Domestically, analysts are expecting Canadian retail sales to fall 0.4 percent and inflation to grow by 0.2 percent. Retail sales is due on Thursday and inflation is due on Friday. "It's really a case of the markets waiting...on the Canadian data, in particular, retail sales and CPI," said Shaun Osborne, chief currency strategist at TD Securities. Osborne expects the currency to trade between C$1.0250 and C$1.04 over the next few days. The Canadian dollar was underperforming most major currencies, but outperforming its commodity counterparts, the Australian and the New Zealand dollars.
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