CANADA FX DEBT-C$ tumbles to new 12-year low; 10-year yield hits record low

Fri Jan 15, 2016 5:09pm EST
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(Adds portfolio manager quote, dealer comment, updates prices)
    * Canadian dollar at C$1.4530, or 68.82 U.S. cents
    * Currency hit a new 12-year low at $1.4555
    * It fell 2.5 percent for the week
    * Bond prices higher across a flatter maturity curve
    * 10-year yield hit new record low at 1.143 percent

    By Fergal Smith
    TORONTO, Jan 15 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar tumbled to a
fresh 12-year low against its U.S. counterpart on Friday and
Canada's 10-year yield hit a record low, pressured by a plunge
in crude oil prices and increased bets that the Bank of Canada
will cut rates next week.
    A sell-off on Wall Street added to pressure on the
risk-sensitive commodity currency, while bond yields were driven
lower as weaker-than-expected U.S. retail sales data
 lessened the prospects of additional U.S. Federal
Reserve interest-rate hikes.
    "The market is thinking of additional (Bank of Canada rate)
cuts, oil keeps getting punished and all these things contribute
to the weaker Canadian dollar," said Andrew Kelvin, senior rates
strategist at TD Securities.
    The implied probability of a Bank of Canada rate cut next
week has increased to 64 percent from just 22 percent after a
speech last week by the central bank's governor Stephen Poloz.
    The market has fully discounted a rate cut by April and it
has implied a one-third chance of an additional rate cut by the
end of the year. Moreover, the central bank's new lower bound of
-0.50 percent has offered scope for even deeper cuts.
    U.S. crude prices settled at $29.42 a barrel, down
5.71 percent.
    China managing the depreciation of its currency may be
exacerbating market moves, according to Brad Schruder, director
of foreign exchange sales at BMO Capital Markets, as it sells
holdings in different asset classes around the world to buy its
own currency.    
    The Canadian dollar ended at C$1.4530 to the
greenback, or 68.82 U.S. cents, much weaker than the Bank of
Canada's official close Thursday of C$1.4362, or 69.63 U.S.
    The currency's strongest level of the session was C$1.4345,
while it hit its weakest level since April 2003 at C$1.4555.
    It fell 2.5 percent for the week.
    Canadian government bond prices were higher across the
maturity curve, with the two-year price up 5.5
Canadian cents to yield 0.288 percent and the 10-year
 rising 79 Canadian cents to yield 1.147 percent. It
hit a record low at 1.143 percent.
    "At these yields we are pricing in a pretty dire growth and
inflation environment for a number of years," said Michael
Greenberg, a portfolio manager for Franklin Templeton Solutions.
    The curve flattened in sympathy with U.S. Treasuries, as the
spread between the 2-year and 10-year yields narrowed by 5.7
basis points to 85.9 basis points, indicating outperformance for
longer-dated maturities.

 (Reporting by Fergal Smith; Editing by Bernadette Baum, Bernard