CANADA FX DEBT-C$ strengthens as data hits greenback

Thu Jan 8, 2009 5:04pm EST
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* C$ strengthens as U.S. data hits greenback

* Bonds mixed across the curve ahead of Friday jobs data

By Jennifer Kwan

TORONTO, Jan 8 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar strengthened versus the U.S. currency on Thursday as the greenback retreated on weak U.S. economic data and investors braced for key monthly employment figures due on Friday.

Bonds were slightly lower at the short end, but mostly higher at the long end of the curve with markets trading cautiously ahead of the jobs data.

The Canadian currency closed at C$1.1785 to the U.S. dollar, or 84.85 U.S. cents, up from C$1.1971 to the U.S. dollar, or 83.54 U.S. cents, on Wednesday.

The biggest factor driving the Canadian currency was the weekly U.S. jobless claims numbers released on Thursday, said Andrew Pyle, investment executive at Scotia McLeod.

The greenback was pressured by the data, which showed unemployment benefit rolls swelled to a 26-year high in the last week of December. Meanwhile, bleak retail sales figures also weighed. [[ID:nN08421512]]

December employment data for both Canada and the United States will be released on Friday.   Continued...