February 16, 2016 / 2:46 PM / 4 years ago

REFILE-CANADA FX DEBT-C$ firms as oil prices, factory sales rise

(Relpaces word "on" with "and" in 1st paragraph)
    * Canadian dollar at C$1.3822 or 72.35 U.S. cents
    * Bond prices mixed across the maturity curve

    TORONTO, Feb 16 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar on Tuesday
hit a 12-day high against its U.S. counterpart, helped by gains
in global oil prices and higher-than-expected factory sales.
    It pared gains as the rally in crude oil prices lost some
momentum after Saudi Arabia and Russia agreed to freeze, but not
cut, oil output. 
    U.S. crude prices were up 0.68 percent to $29.64 a
    Canadian factory sales rose by a higher-than-forecast 1.2
percent in December from November on gains for motor vehicles
and wood products, data from Statistics Canada showed on
    In other domestic data, sales of existing homes in Canada
rebounded 0.5 percent in January from December as strong demand
in Toronto and Vancouver offset declines in Calgary and
Edmonton, a report from the Canadian Real Estate Association
    At 9:23 a.m. EST (1423 GMT), the Canadian dollar 
was trading at C$1.3822 to the greenback, or 72.35 U.S. cents,
stronger than Friday's official close of C$1.3861, or 72.14 U.S.
    The currency touched its strongest since Feb 4. at C$1.3707,
while its weakest level was C$1.3840.    
    Bearish bets by speculators against the Canadian dollar were
trimmed slightly further after reaching five-month highs in
    Net short Canadian dollar positions decreased to 51,935
contracts in the week ended Feb. 9 from 52,420 in the prior
week, Commodity Futures Trading Commission data showed on
    Canadian government bond prices were mixed across the
maturity curve, with the two-year price down 0.5
Canadian cent to yield 0.439 percent and the benchmark 10-year
 rising 16 Canadian cents to yield 1.117 percent.
    The 10-year yield touched a record low of 0.921 percent on
Feb. 11 amid a flight to safety.
    The Canada-U.S. 10-year spread was 3.3 basis points more
negative at -64.4 basis points as recent outperformance by
Treasuries was pared. 

 (Reporting by Fergal Smith Editing by W Simon)
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