Canadian dollar falls as investors weigh hot U.S. inflation data

The Canadian dollar weakened against the greenback on Thursday as data showing that U.S. inflation soared to a 40-year high in January raised expectations for aggressive interest rate hikes by the Federal Reserve.

U.S. bond yields climbed and the greenback rallied against a basket of major currencies as the U.S. consumer price index climbed at an annual rate of 7.5%, fueling speculation of a 50 basis points interest rate hike from the Fed next month.

The Canadian dollar was down 0.3% at 1.2707 to the greenback, or 78.70 U.S. cents, after trading in a range of 1.2666 to 1.2717.

The decline for the currency came as the shutdown of a vital U.S.-Canada trade route due to protests against Canada’s pandemic measures began to weigh on automakers’ operations.

The price of oil, one of Canada’s major exports, was pressured by the potential for U.S.-Iran nuclear talks to lead to an increase in global crude supplies. U.S. crude prices fell 0.5% to $89.26 a barrel.

Canadian government bond yields were higher across the curve, tracking the move in U.S. Treasuries.

The 10-year rose 4.7 basis points at 1.894%, moving closer to the 1.905% peak it reached in January, which was its highest level in nearly three years.

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