Canadian dollar rises to near one-week high as U.S. inflation slows

TORONTO (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar strengthened to a nearly one-week high against its U.S. counterpart on Tuesday as oil prices rose and after tame U.S. inflation data weighed on the greenback.

FILE PHOTO: A Canadian dollar coin, commonly known as the "Loonie", is pictured in this illustration picture taken in Toronto January 23, 2015. REUTERS/Mark Blinch

At 3:55 p.m. (1955 GMT), the Canadian dollar was trading 0.3 percent higher at 1.3356 to the greenback, or 74.87 U.S. cents. The currency touched its strongest level since March 6 at 1.3353.

“It (the loonie) seems to have reacted to the softer read on U.S. CPI,” said Mazen Issa, a senior FX strategist at TD Securities. “Particularly the high yielders have been better performers following that report.”

Canada has one of the highest interest rates in the G10 following 125 basis points in tightening by the Bank of Canada since July 2017.

The U.S. dollar fell against a basket of major currencies after data showed the smallest annual gain for U.S. consumer prices in nearly 2-1/2 years.

The price of oil, one of Canada’s major exports, was supported by signs of tightening global supply after a Saudi official said the kingdom planned to cut oil exports in April, while the U.S. government reduced its forecast for domestic crude output growth.

U.S. crude oil futures settled 0.1 percent higher at $56.87 a barrel.

The six-day high for the loonie came after domestic data on Friday showed a bumper jobs gain in February.

Bank of Canada Senior Deputy Governor Carolyn Wilkins is due to speak on Thursday, while Canadian manufacturing sales data for January is due on Friday.

Canadian government bond prices were higher across a flatter yield curve in sympathy with U.S. Treasuries. The two-year rose 1 Canadian cent to yield 1.652 percent and the 10-year was up 14 Canadian cents to yield 1.738 percent.

The 10-year yield touched its lowest since June 2017 at 1.728 percent.

Reporting by Fergal Smith; Editing by Jonathan Oatis and Peter Cooney