CORRECTED-CANADA FX DEBT-C$ boosted by N.American data
(Corrects Wednesday's closing price in third paragraph) * C$ at C$0.9778 to US$, or $1.0227 * Data on Canadian trade deficit, U.S. jobless claims helps * Spain under pressure to seek bailout after S&P downgrade By Alastair Sharp TORONTO, Oct 11 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar strengthened to a session high against its U.S. counterpart on Thursday after claims for U.S. jobless benefits fell to a multi-year low and Canada reported a narrower-than-expected trade deficit. The resources-linked currency was also helped by positive jobs data from fellow mining exporter Australia and by Standard & Poor's ratings downgrade of Spain, which traders calculated would push the country closer to requesting a bailout. At 9:31 a.m. (1331 GMT), the Canadian currency was trading at C$0.9772 to the greenback, or $1.0233, compared to its North American close at C$0.9807, or C$1.0197, on Wednesday. "The Spain downgrade caught a few people off guard," said Steve Butler, director of foreign exchange trading at Scotiabank. "But risk has come roaring back this morning and we see stocks pointing in the right direction, and that's helping the Canadian dollar." "We also had a positive surprise in Aussie jobs numbers overnight, so that's influencing the commodity space a little bit and oil's up this morning. So all things good for Canada seem to be in play this morning, and that's got Canada on its front foot again after yesterday's pretty ugly selloff." The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits fell sharply last week to the lowest level in more than four and a half years, according U.S. government data on Thursday that suggested improvement in the labor market of Canada's main trading partner. Canada's trade deficit fell more than expected in August as imports declined, Statistics Canada data showed. With investors shifting into riskier assets, Canadian government bond prices fell. The two-year bond slipped 4 Canadian cents to yield 1.156 percent, while the benchmark 10-year bond fell by 34 Canadian cents, to yield 1.830 percent. (Editing by Leslie Adler)
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