CANADA FX DEBT-C$ climbs to 3-month high, commodities support

Thu Jan 14, 2010 1:19pm EST
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* Hits high at C$1.0245, or 97.61 U.S. cents

* Soft U.S. retail data pressures greenback

* Commodities little changed, offer some support

* Bonds mostly follow U.S. Treasury prices higher (Updates to midday, adds quotes)

By Jennifer Kwan

TORONTO, Jan 14 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar shot to a three-month high against the U.S. currency on Thursday as the greenback fell on soft U.S. economic data and the Canadian currency gained momentum after piercing key technical levels.

The Canadian unit rose as far as C$1.0245 to the U.S. dollar, or 97.61 U.S. cents, a three month high. The move was aided by a solid performance among commodity-linked currencies, but gained steam as the Canadian dollar firmly pierced C$1.0300, said Matthew Strauss, senior currency strategist at RBC Capital Markets.

"The underlying global backdrop supported commodity-based currencies but the (Canadian dollar's) move against the U.S. dollar had more to do with important technical levels being broken," he said.

Market watchers will now wait and see if the currency is able to pierce its Oct. 15 high of C$1.0207 to the U.S. dollar, a signal that it could quickly reach parity.   Continued...