CANADA FX DEBT-US, China data help C$ rise to 2012 high

Thu Mar 1, 2012 4:50pm EST
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* C$ ends at C$0.9859 vs US$ or $1.0143

* Currency touches highest since Sept. 19

* China factory data sets the tone

* Bond prices retreat across curve

By Jennifer Kwan

TORONTO, March 1 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar climbed against the U.S. currency for the fourth straight day on Thursday, hitting its highest level of the year, spurred by upbeat U.S. and Chinese economic data.

U.S. jobless claims data that bolstered views of a strengthening labor market and solid monthly sales from U.S. chain stores boosted stock markets and gave investors confidence to move away from safe-haven government debt and the greenback.

"Generally the overall trend and certainly the employment trend - so things like initial jobless claims - have been surprising slightly on the upside and that's been good for the outlook for the economy," said Camilla Sutton, chief currency strategist at Scotia Capital.   Continued...