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Loonie sits tight as investors seek clues on rate outlook

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10/09/2019 | 04:51pm EDT
A Canadian dollar coin, commonly known as the

TORONTO (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar was little changed against the U.S. dollar on Wednesday, extending this week's holding pattern, as markets awaited a clearer signal from central banks on the outlook for interest rates.

At 4:01 p.m. (2001 GMT), the Canadian dollar <CAD=D4> was trading nearly unchanged at 1.3331 to the greenback, or 75.01 U.S. cents. The currency traded in a range of 1.3296 to 1.3334.

Since the start of the week, the range has been only slightly wider at between 1.3289 and 1.3336.

"The market is in a real snooze fest right now," said Amo Sahota, director at Klarity FX in San Francisco. "Maybe the market is waiting for the next central bank meetings to come out."

Both the Bank of Canada and the Federal Reserve will make their next interest rate decision on October 30.

Most Fed policymakers supported the need for an interest rate cut in September, minutes of the central bank's last policy meeting showed on Wednesday, but they remain increasingly divided on the path ahead for monetary policy.

Canada's employment report for September, due on Friday, can help guide expectations for the Bank of Canada policy outlook.

Robust job gains this year have supported the Canadian central bank's decision to leave its benchmark interest rate on hold at 1.75%.

The Canadian dollar has found support this month each time it has approached the area around 1.3350.

If that support level is broken, then "there is room" for the currency to weaken to 1.35, Sahota said.

The price of oil, one of Canada's major exports, gave up its earlier gains as a build in U.S. crude inventories offset potential disruption to supply and hopes of progress in ending the U.S.-China trade war. U.S. crude oil futures settled 0.1% lower at $52.59 a barrel.

Canadian government bond prices were lower across the yield curve in sympathy with U.S. Treasuries after a flood of supply. The two-year <CA2YT=RR> fell 6 Canadian cents to yield 1.474% and the 10-year <CA10YT=RR> was down 31 Canadian cents to yield 1.312%.

(Reporting by Fergal Smith; Editing by Bernadette Baum and Grant McCool)

By Fergal Smith

Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
AUSTRALIAN DOLLAR / CANADIAN DOLLAR (AUD/CAD) 0.53% 0.89663 Delayed Quote.-7.17%
BRITISH POUND / CANADIAN DOLLAR (GBP/CAD) -0.10% 1.69096 Delayed Quote.-3.17%
CANADIAN DOLLAR / JAPANESE YEN (CAD/JPY) 0.41% 82.63 Delayed Quote.2.53%
CANADIAN DOLLAR / SWISS FRANC (CAD/CHF) -0.17% 0.75154 Delayed Quote.5.23%
CRB COMMODITY INDEX 0.10% 195.01 End-of-day quote.0.00%
LONDON BRENT OIL 1.41% 59.87 Delayed Quote.9.34%
NEW ZEALAND DOLLAR / CANADIAN DOLLAR (NZD/CAD) 0.50% 0.83404 Delayed Quote.-9.33%
US DOLLAR / CANADIAN DOLLAR (USD/CAD) -0.49% 1.31376 Delayed Quote.-2.90%
WTI 2.29% 53.99 Delayed Quote.17.91%
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