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Saturday June 23, 2007 - 13:05:43 GMT
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Forex Market News Canadian dollar breaks losing streak, bonds up

Canadian dollar breaks losing streak, bonds up
Fri Jun 22, 2007 5:28 PM ET

By John McCrank

TORONTO, June 22 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar broke its two-day losing streak against the greenback on Friday, closing higher on renewed buying interest and technical moves, while bond prices rose slightly on the back of a rally in U.S. treasuries.

The Canadian dollar closed at C$1.0696 to the U.S. dollar, or 93.49 U.S. cents, up from C$1.0747 to the U.S. dollar, or 93.05 U.S. cents, at Thursday's close.

With no major North American data to consider, currency traders were focused on technical levels.

"I sense that there were still some people who where caught long from yesterday's (U.S. dollar) rally up to C$1.0760 and once we broke below C$1.07, we saw some stop-loss selling," said George Davis, chief technical strategist at RBC Capital Markets.

"We saw the Canadian dollar improve a little bit on some of the crosses as well, which I think helped the Canadian dollar along."

The Canadian unit had slipped to a three-week low on Thursday, after soft April retail sales and weaker than expected wholesale trade data shook investors' confidence that the Bank of Canada would raise interest rates when it announces its next decision on July 10.

Key data in the coming weeks should make the rate picture clearer, with the Bank of Canada's Business Outlook Survey and April gross domestic product both due next Friday, with June employment the following Friday.

The central bank's key overnight rate is currently at 4.25 percent.

The Canadian currency is up almost 11 percent from February's 15-month low, buoyed by a raft of strong economic data, merger-related currency buying, strong commodity prices, and expectations for higher domestic interest rates.

BONDS INCH HIGHER

Canadian bond prices were slightly higher, taking their lead from U.S. treasuries, which rallied as fears over lingering subprime mortgage problems caused U.S. investors to dump stocks and move into government bonds.

The rise in bond prices was muted compared with the move into U.S. treasuries, as the odds are that the U.S. Federal Reserve will leave interest rates unchanged at 5.25 percent next week.

In contrast, Canada's central bank is widely expected to begin tightening on July 10. Rising interest rates generally push bond prices lower.

"We're still looking for a fair amount of underperformance in Canada relative to U.S. treasuries, mainly because of, basically, policy rate convergence," said Marc Levesque, chief fixed income strategist at TD Securities.

The two-year bond rose 4 Canadian cents to C$98.33 to yield 4.663 percent, while the 10-year bond gained 19 Canadian cents to C$95.29 to yield 4.651 percent.

The yield spread between the two-year and 10-year bond moved to -1.2 basis points from -0.7 at the previous close.

The 30-year bond added 35 Canadian cents to C$117.65 to yield 4.580 percent. In the United States, the 30-year treasury yielded 5.2525 percent.

The three-month when-issued T-bill yielded 4.35 percent, down from 4.36 percent at the previous close.

© Reuters 2007. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of Reuters content, including by caching, framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Reuters. Reuters and the Reuters sphere logo are registered trademarks and trademarks of the Reuters group of companies around the world.

 

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