CANADA FX DEBT-C$ holds steady after mixed North American data
* C$ at C$1.0167 vs US$, or 98.36 U.S. cents * Canadian January GDP grows higher-than-expected 0.2 pct * U.S. quarterly GDP growth sluggish * U.S. weekly jobless claims rise more than expected By Solarina Ho TORONTO, March 28 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar traded little changed on Thursday against its U.S. counterpart following data that showed Canada's economy rebounded in January, while a report showed growth in the U.S economy to be slightly weaker-than-expected. The Canadian economy grew a higher-than-expected 0.2 percent in January following the weakest two quarters since the 2008-09 recession thanks to solid manufacturing, mining and an end to a work stoppage in professional ice hockey, Statistics Canada said on Thursday. "The rebound in January bodes well for quarterly growth ... but the pace is still looking fairly moderate, sub-potential," said Paul Ferley, assistant chief economist at Royal Bank of Canada. Industrial product prices grew in February as well, up 1.4 percent from January, the biggest jump since June 2008 as prices for petroleum, coal and other commodities charged higher. U.S. data, meanwhile, showed the number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits rose more than expected last week, but likely not enough to suggest the labor market recovery was taking a step back. Separate data also showed the U.S. economy expanded at a sluggish pace in the fourth quarter. "U.S. data was marginally weaker than expected. A little disappointment there ... The Canadian data wasn't materially stronger than expectations," said Ferley. At 9:15 a.m. (1315 GMT), the Canadian dollar was trading at C$1.0167 versus the greenback, or 98.36 U.S. cents, nearly little changed from Wednesday's North American close at C$1.0165, or 98.38 U.S. cents. It hit C$1.0145, or 98.57 U.S. cents, its strongest level in more than a month, immediately after the 8:30 a.m. data before retreating again. The Canadian dollar's performance was mixed against other currencies. It strengthened against the Australian dollar , but weakened against the euro. Although it still traded close to 2-1/2 month highs against the euro, the latter remained vulnerable to the crisis in Cyprus where banks reopened after the imposition of capital controls. The currency was expected to trade between C$1.0135 and C$1.0180 on Thursday, according to a RBC research note. The price of government bonds was mixed, with the two-year bond down half a Canadian cent to yield 0.997 percent, while the benchmark 10-year bond rose 4.1 Canadian cents to yield 1.865 percent.
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