September 18, 2017 / 12:34 PM / a year ago

Record bonds help July foreign investment in Canadian securities pick up

OTTAWA (Reuters) - Foreign investors resumed their purchases of Canadian securities in July following a divestment in the previous month, led by a record acquisition of bonds, data from Statistics Canada showed on Monday.

International investors bought C$24 billion ($19.7 billion) in Canadian securities after selling a revised C$858 million in June.

June’s purchases were driven by C$23.8 billion in Canadian bonds. Investment in new issues of private corporate bonds in foreign markets contributed the most to the increase at C$11.4 billion. Nearly half of these new bonds were issued by Canadian banks, the statistics agency said.

Foreign investors also bought C$8 billion in federal government bonds and C$2.9 billion in provincial government bonds. The increased investment came alongside a 35-basis-point increase in Canadian long-term interest rates in July, as the Bank of Canada raised its benchmark rate for the first time in nearly seven years.

At the same time, Canadian investors sold C$1.8 billion in foreign securities as they reduced their holdings of equities by C$2.9 billion.

Despite the decrease, Canadians have bought C$31.3 billion in foreign shares this year so far, compared to a divestment of C$243 million in the same time period last year. U.S. stock prices are up 10.4 percent since last December.

Reporting by Leah Schnurr; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama

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