By Frank Pingue
TORONTO, Feb 9 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar was higher versus the greenback on Monday after a choppy morning as traders worried over the timing and details of U.S. plans for fiscal stimulus and a package to help banks.
U.S. President Barack Obama's administration delayed the announcement of the bank rescue plan, which had been scheduled for Monday, until Tuesday as the government pressed lawmakers to settle their differences over the economic stimulus plan.
The announcement of the rescue plan, which aims to shore up some of the biggest U.S. banking institutions, was pushed back to enable lawmakers to spend the day focusing on the stimulus package ahead of a vote on Tuesday.
That helped offer an early boost to the U.S. dollar, which is considered a safe haven play.
But the move was undone and the Canadian currency turned higher as traders accepted that a bailout, while delayed, would still get done. That kept some interest in snapping up riskier assets such as the Canadian dollar.
"Obviously the delay getting the package pushed through in the U.S. has been unsettling, but at the same time people have a lot of hope that it will eventually get done and we'll see some things actually start to go to work," said Steve Butler, director of foreign exchange trading at Scotia Capital.
At 9:45 a.m. (1445 GMT), the Canadian unit was at C$1.2198 to the U.S. dollar, or 81.98 U.S. cents, up from C$1.2225 to the U.S. dollar, or 81.70 U.S. cents, at Friday's close.
BOND PRICES LOWER
Canadian bond prices were stuck slightly lower across the curve alongside the bigger U.S. Treasury market as focus on the stimulus and a bank rescue plan in the United States brought supply concerns back into the picture. (Editing by Peter Galloway)