* C$ touches high of 96.06 U.S. cents
* Currency strongest since Aug. 20
* U.S. jobs numbers fall less than expected
* Bank of Canada rate hike expectations rise
* Bonds prices extend losses after data
(Updates with analyst comment, U.S. jobs data)
TORONTO, Sept 3 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar rallied
against the greenback on Friday, climbing by more than a penny
to reach a two-week high after an upside surprise in monthly
U.S. nonfarm payroll numbers.
U.S. employment fell for a third straight month in August,
but declined only about half as much as anticipated, and
private payrolls growth surprised on the upside, easing
pressure on the Federal Reserve to prop up growth.
In response, the Canadian dollar
C$1.0410 to the U.S. dollar, or 96.06 U.S. cents, compared with
Thursday's close at C$1.0535 to the U.S. dollar, or 94.92 U.S.
cents. The currency had traded weaker before the report.
"When it looked like our major trading partner was going
into the dumps, CAD underperformed and now that it looks like
they maybe aren't going into the dumps as quickly as
anticipated, CAD is storming back," said David Watt, senior
currency strategist at RBC Capital Markets.
BONDS YIELDS, RATE EXPECATIONS JUMP
The jobs data also fed into Canadian interest rate
expectations as a sputtering U.S. economy has been a top
concern. Investors have feared sustained weakness in the United
States would spill over to Canada's economy.
The Bank of Canada decides on interest rates on Sept. 8 and
it is one of the closest calls in some time. [CA/POLL]
The market raised the probability of a hike to more than 62
percent from around 52 percent before the data was released,
according to a Reuters calculation based on yields on overnight
Higher interest rates, or the expectation of higher rates,
tend to attract capital and stoke demand for a country's
"I think we'll have the Bank of Canada raising rates but
still sounding exceptionally cautious," added Watt.
"It would have had to have been a stunningly weak number to
knock the Bank of Canada off raising interest rates."
Following the better than expected jobs data, Canadian
bonds extended losses, tracking U.S. Treasuries lower. [US/]
Bond prices typically fall when interest rates go up as
their low-yielding fixed payments seems less lucrative compared
to rising yields on other short-term investments.
Canada's rate-sensitive two-year bond
Canadian cents to yield 1.376 percent, up from 1.302 percent
before the data.
The 10-year issue
sank C$1.22 to yield 3.010
percent, up from 2.897 percent before the U.S. jobs report.
(Editing by Jeffrey Hodgson)