March 18, 2020 / 1:24 PM / in 5 months

CANADA FX DEBT-Loonie hits 4-year low ahead of potential stimulus as oil slumps

    * Canadian dollar weakens 1.3% against the greenback
    * Canadian CPI rises 2.2% year-over-year in February
    * Price of U.S. oil decreases 9%
    * Canadian bond yields were mixed across a steeper curve

    By Fergal Smith
    TORONTO, March 18 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar weakened
to a four-year low against the greenback on Wednesday as oil
prices tumbled and investors awaited potential stimulus from
Ottawa and the Bank of Canada to ease the economic impact of the
coronavirus outbreak.    
    Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz and Canadian Finance
Minister Bill Morneau will announce support for those affected
by the virus, the finance ministry said. The two men will hold a
news conference at 11.15 a.m. (1515 GMT).             
    "We expect the Bank will be announcing a reduction in
interest rates to the effective lower bound in conjunction with
a stimulus package from Minister Morneau," said Royce Mendes, a
senior economist at CIBC Capital Markets.
    Canada will unveil a C$27 billion aid package to help
overcome the effects of a worsening coronavirus outbreak that
Ottawa says could last for months, a government source said on
Tuesday.             
    At 9:13 a.m. (1313 GMT), the Canadian dollar          was
trading 1.3% lower at 1.4394 to the greenback, or 69.47 U.S.
cents. The currency touched its weakest intraday level since
January 2016 at 1.4408.
    Canada and the United States are working on a deal to close
their joint border to non-essential travel as part of the fight
against a coronavirus outbreak, a Canadian government source
said.             
    The price of oil, one of Canada's major exports, fell to a
17-year low as travel and social lockdowns sparked by the
coronavirus epidemic knocked the outlook for demand. U.S. crude
oil futures        were down 9% at $24.52 a barrel.             
     Global stocks stumbled back into the red as fears over the
coronavirus fallout eclipsed large-scale support measures rolled
out by policymakers around the globe.                 
    Canadian government bond yields were mixed across a steeper
yield curve in sympathy with U.S. Treasuries as investors braced
for increased fiscal spending. The 2-year yield fell 6.7 basis
points to 0.587%, while the 10-year yield was up 3 basis points
at 0.986%.
    Canada's consumer price index rose by 2.2% year-over-year in
February, down from 2.4% in January, Statistics Canada said. The
average of the Bank of Canada's three core measures was steady
at 2.0%.     

 (Reporting by Fergal Smith
Editing by Nick Zieminski)
  
0 : 0
  • narrow-browser-and-phone
  • medium-browser-and-portrait-tablet
  • landscape-tablet
  • medium-wide-browser
  • wide-browser-and-larger
  • medium-browser-and-landscape-tablet
  • medium-wide-browser-and-larger
  • above-phone
  • portrait-tablet-and-above
  • above-portrait-tablet
  • landscape-tablet-and-above
  • landscape-tablet-and-medium-wide-browser
  • portrait-tablet-and-below
  • landscape-tablet-and-below