Canada dollar rallies to two-week high against greenback

Mon Mar 19, 2012 5:06pm EDT
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By Claire Sibonney

TORONTO (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar jumped to more than a two-week high against the U.S. currency on Monday, helped by a rally in commodity prices and the prospect of more takeovers of Canadian companies by foreign buyers.

U.S. crude oil futures rose on persistent worries about supply disruption from Iran, firmer U.S. stocks and a weaker greenback.

On Wall Street, shares got a boost from Apple Inc after the tech giant said it will pay a dividend and buy back stock, while the euro climbed amid the sense of some stabilization of Europe's debt troubles.

"It looks like this was a general (U.S.) dollar move, the euro sort of led the way," said Matt Perrier, a director of foreign exchange sales at BMO Capital Markets.

Perrier said talk of a sale of Canada's biggest grain handler, Viterra Inc, was also positive for the currency.

"Between potential M&A flows and general U.S. dollar weakness here, that's given us the first little bit of a move we've seen in over a week," he added.

Canada's currency ended the North American session at C$0.9875 versus the U.S. dollar, or $1.0127, up from Friday's North American session close at C$0.9919 versus the U.S. dollar, or $1.0082.

Earlier, the Canadian dollar hit an intraday high of C$0.9861 versus the U.S. dollar, or $1.0141, its strongest level since March 2.   Continued...

Canadian one hundred dollar bills are displayed in this posed photograph in Toronto, October 22, 2008. REUTERS/Mark Blinch