TORONTO, June 15 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar fell sharply against the U.S. dollar on Monday, pressured by a return of risk aversion, and as the greenback gained broadly after Russia's finance minister expressed confidence in the currency.
Investors also awaited an announcement from the leader of Canada's main opposition Liberal Party, who will on Monday morning say whether he is satisfied by how Ottawa is tackling the economic crisis.
At 7:51 a.m. (1351 GMT) trades were at C$1.1322, or 88.32 U.S. cents, down from Friday's finish at C$1.1179 to the U.S. dollar, or 89.45 U.S. cents.
"We are seeing U.S. dollar strength returning across the board. It's partly because of risk aversion returning, partly because the G8 meeting is out of the way," said Matthew Strauss, senior currency strategist, RBC Capital Markets, adding there were concerns the Group of Eight communique might make reference to the recent weakness in the currency.
The U.S. dollar gained broadly on Monday after Russia's finance minister said the dollar's role as the main reserve currency was unlikely to change in the near future. [FRX/] [ID:nFCA000184]
Canada is a major oil producer and the currency was pressured by a drop in oil pricesto around $71 a barrel, pushed lower in part by the U.S. dollar's rise. [ID:nSIN431717]
Weakness in global equities also played a factor in the weak Canadian currency, [MKTS/GLOB] while U.S. stock index futures pointed to a lower open. [ID:nN15170481]
Last week, the Canadian dollar came under pressure from comments made by Bank of Canada Governor Mark Carney that the rapid appreciation of the Canadian currency could hinder economic recovery. Shortly after Carney's remarks, Finance Minister Jim Flaherty said the rise of the currency is a concern "if there's a speculative element".
As of Monday morning, the Canadian dollar has risen about 15 percent against the greenback since early March.
Canadian bond prices were mostly higher, tracking the U.S. Treasury market, which rose on Monday as declines in regional stock markets boosted the bid for less risky fixed-income assets. [ID:nLF389225] (Reporting by Jennifer Kwan; Editing by Padraic Cassidy)
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