CANADA FX DEBT-C$ falls in illiquid trade, bonds down
* C$ falls to 95.15 U.S. cents
* Greenback gains against range of currencies
* Bond prices down, underperform U.S. counterparts
TORONTO, Dec 30 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar fell versus a broadly stronger U.S. currency on Wednesday, backing further away from a 2-1/2 month high hit in the previous session in illiquid conditions.
The greenback gained across the board on Wednesday, hitting its highest since late September against the Japanese yen as it benefited from year-end flows in thin trade and from the view the U.S. economy is on the road to recovery. [FRX/]
After a technical point was triggered in the previous session, market players took the Canadian currency to a high not seen since Oct. 20 at 96.47 U.S. cents, but the move was short-lived.
"It was a little bit overdone. Expectations as to Canada holding better levels sub-C$1.04 is probably unrealistic at this point in time. There's not enough participants in the market to support those levels just yet," said C.J. Gavsie, managing director of foreign exchange sales at BMO Capital Markets.
"We do believe going forward into early to mid-January we will retest those levels. If we do see them by the end of this week it's only going to be on sharp flows that are probably going to recoil."
For the time being, the C$1.0450-C$1.05 range will likely be a bit more of a "natural" level, he added. Thin trading conditions will likely make for further exaggerated moves.
At 9:27 a.m. (1415 GMT), the Canadian dollar was at C$1.0528 to the U.S. dollar, or 94.98 U.S. cents, down from C$1.0438 to the U.S. dollar, or 95.80 U.S. cents, at Tuesday's close.
No Canadian economic data is on tap this week, but investors may look to the Institute for Supply Management-Chicago's business barometer for the U.S. Midwest in December at 1445 GMT on Wednesday for direction.
Canadian bond prices were lower and mostly underperforming their U.S. counterparts ahead of a seven-year U.S. bond auction later in the day.
The U.S. Treasury will offer $32 billion of seven-year bonds, the last of this week's three debt sales totalling $118 billion.
The two-year Canadian government bond CA2YT=RR was off 3 Canadian cents at C$99.62 to yield 1.453 percent, while the 10-year bond CA10YT=RR fell 28 Canadian cents to C$100.82 to yield 3.646 percent. (Reporting by Ka Yan Ng; Editing by Jeffrey Hodgson)
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