* C$ ends at 98.17 U.S. cents
* Bonds flat at short end, higher at long end
* Markets eye domestic GDP, jobs data later this week (Updates to close, adds quote)
By Jennifer Kwan
TORONTO, Nov 29 (Reuters) - Canada's dollar eked out a small gain against the U.S. currency on Monday as market worries eased about Europe's ability to contain its credit crisis following Ireland's bailout.
European Union finance ministers endorsed on the weekend an 85 billion euro loan package to help Ireland bridge its deficit [ID:nLDE6AS08D] On Monday global equities dropped in reaction and the greenback rose due to concerns about how Europe might handle a wider crisis. Those concerns relaxed as the day progressed, however.
The Canadian currency CAD=D4, which fell to a low of C$1.0258 to the U.S. dollar, or 97.48 U.S. cents, early in the session, got a late-day boost as Toronto's resource-heavy stock index rebounded, pushed up by firm oil and gold prices, and U.S. stocks trimmed losses significantly. [.TO] [.N] [O/R] [GOL/]
"Initially there was some skepticism (about the Ireland deal). That's still the case, perhaps, but at least for now the market is willing to put it to one side," said Mark Chandler, head of Canadian fixed income and currency strategy at RBC Capital Markets.
"It's a big data week so maybe we can get Europe off the front page for a while."
The Canadian dollar finished at C$1.0186 to the U.S. dollar, or 98.17 U.S. cents, up slightly from C$1.0200 to the U.S. dollar, or 98.04 U.S. cents, at Friday's close.
This week's heavy slate of key data includes economic growth data for September and the third quarter, as well as November employment data. ECONCA [ID:nN26127869] [ID:nN26125524]
The data will be used to help determine Bank of Canada monetary policy, although markets say it is unlikely to have much impact on the central bank's Dec. 7 interest rate announcement.
Markets are pricing in roughly a 94 percent chance that the bank will not change its benchmark rate on Dec.7, according to a Reuters calculation of yields on overnight index swaps, which reflect expectations for the policy rate. BOCWATCH
The Bank of Canada recently said it would have to consider any further rate hikes carefully given the patchy global recovery and expected curbs on Canadian growth. For more details, please see: [ID:nN27276109] [CA/POLL]
Canadian government bonds were flat, but followed U.S. Treasuries higher at the longer end, said David Tulk, senior macro strategist at TD Securities.
U.S. long-dated bond prices rose on Monday on Federal Reserve bond purchases, while spreading concern over euro countries' fiscal health also supported demand for safe-haven debt. [US/]
The two-year government of Canada bond CA2YT=RR edged 1 Canadian cent higher to yield 1.663 percent, while the 10-year bond CA10YT=RR rose 24 Canadian cents to yield 3.086 percent. The 30-year bond CA30YT=RR climbed 80 Canadian cents to yield 3.524 percent. (Reporting by Jennifer Kwan; editing by Peter Galloway)