September 10, 2018 / 7:56 PM / 2 months ago

CANADA FX DEBT-C$ near flat as clues run dry on NAFTA trade prospects

 (Adds strategist quotes and details on activity; updates
prices)
    * Canadian dollar at C$1.3160, or 75.99 U.S. cents
    * Price of U.S. oil falls 0.3 percent
    * Bond prices little changed across the yield curve
    * 10-year yield touches an 11-day high intraday at 2.312
percent

    By Fergal Smith
    TORONTO, Sept 10 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar steadied
against its U.S. counterpart on Monday as the greenback slipped
against a basket of currencies and investors awaited clues on
prospects for the NAFTA trade pact.
    At 3:34 p.m. (1934 GMT), the Canadian dollar          was
trading nearly unchanged at C$1.3160 to the greenback, or 75.99
U.S. cents.
    The currency, which touched on Thursday its weakest in
nearly seven weeks at C$1.3226, traded in a narrow range of
C$1.3151 to C$1.3197.    
    The loonie has gyrated in recent days on hawkish comments by
a senior Bank of Canada, weaker-than-expected domestic jobs data
and an uncertain outlook for the North American Free Trade
Agreement, but there was little impetus at the start of the week
for investors to trade off.
    "In Canada, there is no news, there is no data," said Alvise
Marino, an FX strategist at Credit Suisse in New York. "On the
NAFTA front, we are in the same holding pattern that we were
before."
    Canada must end its low-price milk proteins policy to reach
a U.S.-Canadian deal to update the North American Free Trade
Agreement, U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue said in an
interview aired on Sunday on C-SPAN television. [nL2N1VV080}
    Talks on NAFTA are expected to resume after U.S. Trade
Representative Robert Lighthizer travels to Brussels for trade
talks with European Union trade commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom
on Monday.
    The U.S. dollar        lost ground after the European
Union's top negotiator said an agreement for Britain to leave
the economic bloc might be reached in the coming weeks, boosting
the euro        and sterling       .
    The price of oil, one of Canada's major exports, fell after
data suggested U.S. crude inventories might build. U.S. crude
oil futures        settled 0.3 percent lower at $67.54 a barrel.
                
    Speculators have raised bearish bets on the Canadian dollar,
data from the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission and
Reuters calculations showed on Friday. As of Sept. 4, net short
positions had increased to 26,307 contracts from 24,789 a week
earlier.             
    Canadian government bond prices were little changed across
the yield curve, with the 10-year             flat to yield
2.288 percent. The 10-year yield touched its highest intraday
since Aug. 30 at 2.312 percent.

 (Reporting by Fergal Smith
Editing by Nick Zieminski and Lisa Shumaker)
  
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