CANADA FX DEBT-C$ steady near one-month high
* C$ at C$1.0276 to US$, or 97.31 U.S. cents * Holding near one-month high as retail boost lingers * Bond prices mixed By Andrea Hopkins TORONTO, July 24 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar clung close to a one-month high against the U.S. dollar on Wednesday, supported by data this week showing stronger-than-expected domestic retail sales in May, but with its upside limited by more signals of a slowing Chinese economy. Evidence of growth in the euro zone and strong smartphone sales by technology giant Apple lifted European shares and the euro, offsetting a survey of China's vast manufacturing sector that found activity slowed to an 11-month low in July, suggesting the economy was still losing momentum. While Canada's currency tracked the euro briefly higher in early trade, renewed worries over China then hit emerging market shares and commodity-linked currencies such as the Canadian dollar, limiting gains. Tuesday's stellar Canadian retail sales data for May, which came in about five times stronger than expected and boosted growth expectations for the economy, was credited with putting the currency on stronger footing. "The better-than-expected retail sales data built momentum .... and what was support is now resistance in dollar-Canada, at the C$1.0315-C$1.0320 level," said Jack Spitz, managing director of foreign exchange at National Bank Financial. At 9:46 a.m. (1346 GMT) the Canadian dollar was trading at C$1.0276 to the U.S. dollar, or 97.31 U.S. cents, little changed from Tuesday's North American session close of C$1.0285, or 97.23 U.S. cents. The currency's early-day strengthening to C$1.0262 was its highest level since June 19, before U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke expressed optimism about the U.S. economy. His remarks pulled the Canadian currency broadly lower until Tuesday's buoyant retail sales data bolstered hopes for Canadian growth. "We've cleared an important pivot or momentum level and we've cleaned out some of the corporate order bids down to where we see fairly significant support at (the 100-day moving average) C$1.0268," Spitz said. "We dipped a toe under it this morning but not for any significant amount of time." Higher auto sales helped drive Canadian retail sales 1.9 percent higher in May from April, the biggest monthly jump in more than three years and far greater than the 0.4 percent growth predicted by analysts. In the Canadian government debt market, the two-year bond was down 6.5 Canadian cents to yield 1.150 percent and the benchmark 10-year bond shed 52 Canadian cents to yield 2.471 percent.
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