* Canadian dollar at C$1.0612 vs US$, or 94.23 U.S. cents * U.S. data helps greenback * Canada also hurt by blowback from RBA comments * Bond prices mixed across the maturity curve By Alastair Sharp TORONTO, Dec 12 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar weakened on Thursday after strong U.S. retail sales data boosted the greenback, and as its commodity-linked cousin the Australian dollar plunged on comments about the need for a weaker currency from its central bank head. Americans bought more automobiles and other goods in November, adding to signs of a strengthening economy that could draw the Federal Reserve closer to reducing the pace of monetary stimulus, though the outlook was clouded somewhat by a big jump in first-time applications for unemployment benefits last week. "Retail sales was very good, with revisions, the employment data was worse than expected. I think the retail sales is winning out today," said John Curran, senior vice president at CanadianForex. "It is definitely not hurting U.S. dollar/Canada that the Aussie just took a big kick in the face," he said. The Australian dollar lost a cent against the greenback to 89.35 U.S. cents, and was softer against the Canadian currency as well, after Reserve Bank of Australia Governor Glenn Stevens said in an interview with the Australian Financial Review that the currency should be trading closer to 85 U.S. cents. "If the Aussie starts to roll it will have some fallout on the Canadian dollar as well," Curran said. The Canadian dollar was at C$1.0612 to the greenback, or 94.23 U.S. cents, compared to Wednesday's North American close of C$1.0593, or 94.40 U.S. cents. Curran said that if the loonie, as Canada's currency is colloquially known, pushes above $1.0620 it will likely keep weakening and could test recent highs around $1.07 in coming sessions. Canadian government bond prices were mixed across the maturity curve, with the two-year down half a Canadian cent to yield 1.102 percent and the benchmark 10-year was down 4 Canadian cents to yield 2.653 percent. The 20- and 30-year issues were pricing higher, as were 3- and 4-year issues.