CANADA FX DEBT-C$ firms as US jobs data outweighs Canadian

Fri Mar 9, 2012 10:15am EST
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* C$ at C$0.9895 vs US$, or $1.0105

* Bond prices mixed

* Strong U.S. jobs data trumps weak Canada data

By Jon Cook

TORONTO, March 9 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar firmed against the greenback on Friday morning as the market looked past weak domestic employment numbers and was encouraged by stronger-than-expected U.S. jobs data, a further signal of recovery in Canada's biggest trading partner.

"We're in a state now where the Canadian dollar is more severely affected - and positively affected in this case - by U.S. data than it is by our own," said Firas Askari, head of foreign exchange trading at BMO Capital Markets

Figures on Friday showed showed U.S. employers added 227,000 jobs last month, outpacing estimates of 210,000 new jobs. It was the first time in a year that payrolls have grown by more than 200,000 for three straight months.

In Canada, the economy lost 2,800 jobs in February as the creation of 9,100 full-time jobs was offset by 12,000 fewer part-time positions.

The Canadian unemployment rate dropped to 7.4 percent from 7.6 percent in January, but that was because fewer people searched for work.   Continued...