March 21, 2019 / 1:39 PM / a year ago

CANADA FX DEBT-C$ weakens as lower oil prices offset wholesale trade gain

    * Canadian dollar falls 0.2 percent against the greenback
    * Price of U.S. oil declines 0.4 percent
    * Canadian wholesale trade rises 0.6 percent in January
    * Canadian bond prices climb across the yield curve

    TORONTO, March 21 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar weakened
against its U.S. counterpart on Thursday as lower oil prices and
broad-based gains for the greenback offset domestic data showing
increased hiring and wholesale trade.    
    Canadian wholesale trade increased by 0.6 percent in January
from December on stronger sales in the machinery, equipment and
supplies subsector, Statistics Canada said. Analysts surveyed by
Reuters had forecast a 0.5 percent increase.             
    A separate report from ADP showed that Canada added 36,200
jobs in February, led by hiring in the professional and business
services sector.             
    The U.S. dollar        rebounded against a basket of major
currencies after declining the day before when the Federal
Reserve abandoned projections for any interest rate hikes this
year amid signs of an economic slowdown.
    U.S. stocks and the price of oil, one of Canada's major
exports, fell. But oil held near 2019 highs, supported by a
sharp tightening of global stocks, OPEC production cuts and U.S.
sanctions on key producers Iran and Venezuela.
    U.S. crude oil futures        were down 0.40 percent at
$59.99 a barrel.             
    At 9:10 a.m. (1310 GMT), the Canadian dollar          was
trading 0.2 percent lower at 1.3337 to the greenback, or 74.98
U.S. cents. The currency traded in a range of 1.3276 to 1.3355.
    On Tuesday, Canada's federal budget lavished new spending on
middle-class voters ahead of an election in October. But market
players have said the measures fell short of the amount of
stimulus that might move the Bank of Canada to hike interest
rates further.             
    Canada's inflation report for February and January retail
sales data are due on Friday.
    Canadian government bond prices were higher across the yield
curve in sympathy with U.S. Treasuries. The two-year           
rose 2 Canadian cents to yield 1.588 percent and the 10-year
            climbed 9 Canadian cents to yield 1.656 percent.
    The 10-year yield touched its lowest intraday since June
2017 at 1.635 percent.

 (Reporting by Fergal Smith; editing by Jonathan Oatis)
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