Canadian dollar hits 2-week high as Fed stance bolsters sentiment

* Canadian dollar strengthens 0.5% against the greenback

* Loonie touches its strongest level since July 14 at 1.2451

* Price of U.S. oil increases 0.7%

* Canadian bond yields rise across a steeper curve

By Fergal Smith

TORONTO, July 29 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar touched a two-week high against its broadly weaker U.S. counterpart on Thursday, as the Federal Reserve remained patient about reducing stimulus and the Bank of Canada reassured Canadians it would keep inflation under control.

The U.S. dollar .DXY slipped to a one-month low against a basket of major currencies after the U.S. Fed's reassurance that interest rate hikes remain distant.

"The Fed continued to support markets yesterday with upbeat talk on the economy but not committing to cutting stimulus in the near term," Colin Cieszynski, chief market strategist at SIA Wealth Management, said in a note.

Canada sends about 75% of its exports to the United States including oil. Oil prices rose as crude stockpiles in the United States, the world's top oil consumer, fell to their lowest since January 2020.

U.S. crude CLc1 prices were up 0.7% at $72.87 a barrel, while the Canadian dollar CAD= gained 0.5% to 1.2469 per greenback, or 80.20 U.S. cents. It touched its strongest intraday level since July 14 at 1.2451.

Bank of Canada Governor Tiff Macklem, writing in a column for the Financial Post newspaper, said Canadians can be confident that the cost of living will not rise out of control as the economy reopens from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Data on Wednesday showed that Canada's inflation rate slowed to 3.1% in June from a decade-high 3.6% in May, but more price increases could be coming as businesses shuttered during the COVID-19 pandemic reopen and consumers dip into record savings.

Canadian government bond yields were higher across a steeper curve, with the 10-year CA10YT=RR up 3.6 basis points at 1.206%.
Reporting by Fergal Smith; Editing by Susan Fenton

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