The Canadian dollar rose to a 10-day high against the greenback on Monday as investors bet that a meeting between U.S. President Donald Trump and Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell could increase prospects for U.S. interest rate cuts.
At 4:25 p.m. (2125 GMT), the Canadian dollar was trading 0.1% higher at 1.3205 to the greenback, or 75.73 U.S. cents. The currency touched its strongest intraday level since Nov. 8 at 1.3200.
“There are all kinds of rumours flying about the unscheduled meeting between Powell and Trump,” said Adam Button, chief currency analyst at ForexLive. “Virtually any way you look at that meeting, it’s dovish and a negative for the U.S. dollar.”
While the Fed sets policy independent of the White House, investors worried that Trump either urged Powell to cut interest rates further or told Powell something, such as information on U.S. trade talks with China, that could make Powell think about easing, Button said. The Fed said the two met on Monday morning “to discuss the economy, growth, employment and inflation.”
Trump has frequently criticized the Fed for setting interest rates too high. The U.S. central bank has cut rates three times this year – in part to offset what it views as damage done by the Trump administration’s trade war with China.
The U.S. dollar fell against a basket of major currencies and U.S. Treasury yields declined.
Uncertainty over a U.S-China trade deal weighed on the price of oil, one of Canada’s major exports. U.S. crude oil futures settled 1.2% lower at $57.05 a barrel.
Canada’s inflation report for October is due on Wednesday and September retail sales data is due on Friday, both of which could help guide expectations for Bank of Canada interest rate cuts.
Bank of Canada Senior Deputy Governor Carolyn Wilkins will speak on Tuesday on safeguarding the Canadian financial system, while Governor Stephen Poloz is due to speak on Thursday on economic change.
Money markets see chances of the central bank cutting interest rates next month at less than 20%.
Canada’s 10-year bond declined 3 Canadian cents to yield 1.485%. The gap between the 10-year yield and its U.S. equivalent narrowed by 2.5 basis points to a spread of 32.7 basis points in favour of the U.S. bond.