* C$ hits highest against greenback since Aug. 6
* Canada retail sales top expectations
* Bond prices reclaim slice of recent skid
TORONTO, Aug 24 (Reuters) - Canada's dollar rose against
the U.S. dollar for the fifth straight session on Monday,
touching its highest in more than two weeks, after retail sales
topped expectations and raised optimism about the economy.
But most of the gains evaporated later in the session as a
rally by North American equities faltered and U.S. Treasury
bonds jumped, and investors moved into less risky assets.
The latest Canadian data showed retail sales rose 1 percent
from May, fueling hope that the economy is pulling out of
That helped to lift the Canadian currency to C$1.0727 to
the U.S. dollar, or 93.22 U.S. cents, its highest since Aug. 6
and a 22 percent move off the four-year low reached in early
The rise petered out but the Canadian dollar still recorded
a gain for the session, closing at C$1.0770 to the U.S. dollar,
or 92.85 U.S. cents, up from C$1.0819 to the U.S. dollar, or
92.43 U.S. cents, at Friday's close.
"It's a little disappointing because the equities seemed to
have lost their way a bit this afternoon and with that the
Canadian dollar was dragged down," said Steve Butler, director
of foreign exchange trading at Scotia Capital.
"It's not a bad result but I certainly think when you get
below C$1.0740 early this morning and then close back up here
today it's probably not a fantastic result for Canada bulls."
The rally in the Canadian dollar extends a recent run-up
that has been supported by oil prices hitting a 2009 high and
hopes that the global economy was on the mend.
Toronto's S&P/TSX composite index
41.21 points at 10,789.97. Earlier in the session it had
rallied 72 points. [ID:nTOR004899]
Canadian bond prices ended up across the curve, largely
tracking the move in the bigger U.S. Treasury market, as many
investors did some bargain-hunting after recent losses.
The move higher allowed bond prices to rebound from late
last week when dealers unloaded more secure government debt
after U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said prospects
for a return to growth in the near term appeared good in the
United States and elsewhere. [ID:nN2139655]
"It's a bit of bargain hunting from the selloff we had on
Friday and it just manifested as the equity rally just petered
out in North American," said Sheldon Dong, fixed income analyst
at TD Waterhouse Private Investment. "But overall liquidity is
very thin out there so you are going to get really exaggerated
The two-year Canadian bond rose 9 Canadian cents to C$99.38
to yield 1.315 percent, while the 10-year bond rose 45 Canadian
cents to C$102.60 to yield 3.434 percent.
The 30-year bond rallied 90 Canadian cents to C$118.30 to
yield 3.913 percent.
Canadian bonds underperformed their U.S. counterparts
across most of the curve. The Canadian 30-year bond was 35.1
basis points below the U.S. 30-year yield, versus 45.5 basis
points on Friday.