August 2, 2019 / 8:59 PM / 4 months ago

CANADA FX DEBT-C$ steadies after hitting 6-week low amid trade tensions

 (Adds strategist quote and details throughout, updates prices)
    * Canadian dollar falls 0.3% for the week
    * Canada's June exports fall 5.1%
    * Price of U.S. oil increases by 3.2%
    * Bond prices move higher across the yield curve

    By Levent Uslu
    TORONTO, Aug 2 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar was little
changed against its U.S. counterpart on Friday, with the
currency recovering from an earlier six-week low which it hit as
trade tensions escalated and after domestic data showed a drop
in exports.
    Canada posted a narrower trade surplus in June as exports
fell by 5.1%. It was the first drop for exports since February
and reversed a big increase in May.             
    Canada exports many commodities, including oil, so its
economy could be affected by an escalation of trade tensions. On
Thursday, U.S. President Donald Trump said he would slap 10%
tariffs on $300 billion of Chinese imports starting Sept. 1.
            
    "For the most part I think the markets are digesting the
latest trade salvo with regards to the tariffs," said Mazen
Issa, a senior FX strategist at TD Securities.
    Speculators have cut their bullish bets on the Canadian
dollar, data from the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission
and Reuters calculations showed. As of July 30, net long
positions had fallen to 21,722 contracts after they reached the
highest in the prior week since February 2018 at 30,750.
            
    At 3:54 p.m. (1954 GMT), the Canadian dollar          was
trading nearly unchanged at 1.3210 to the greenback, or 75.70
U.S. cents. The currency, which fell by 0.3% this week, hit its
lowest intraday level since June 20 at 1.3265.
    The loonie's recovery from Friday's low came as data showing
a slower pace of U.S. employment growth and the U.S.-China trade
tensions fueled expectations that the Federal Reserve would cut
interest rates again in September, pressuring the U.S. dollar
      .
    Also supportive of the loonie, oil prices rebounded after
recording their biggest daily drop in several years the day
before. U.S. crude oil futures        settled 3.2% higher at
$55.66 a barrel.             
    Canadian government bond prices were higher across the yield
curve, with the two-year            up 3.5 Canadian cents to
yield 1.459% and the 10-year             rising 20 Canadian
cents to yield 1.376%.
    The 10-year yield hit its lowest intraday level since
November 2016 at 1.355%.

 (Reporting by Levent Uslu; Editing by Bernadette Baum and
Sandra Maler)
  
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