* Canadian dollar at C$1.0632 or 94.06 U.S. cents
* Bond prices mostly lower across the maturity curve
By Leah Schnurr
TORONTO, July 4 The Canadian dollar strengthened
slightly against the greenback on Friday, holding on to recent
gains in what was expected to be a quiet session with markets
south of the border closed for the July Fourth holiday.
The loonie touched a six-month high in the previous session
as analysts viewed the robust jobs report out of the United
States as ultimately benefiting Canada, even though the data
initially knocked the currency lower.
With fewer market participants than usual and a lack of
fundamental drivers, the currency appeared content to maintain
those gains after rallying since early June.
Liquidity will likely evaporate further once European
markets close, said Camilla Sutton, chief currency strategist at
Scotiabank in Toronto.
"Beyond that, we've already seen a complete flattening out
of most of the major currencies, so the Canadian dollar is a
little bit stronger than it was," said Sutton.
The Canadian dollar was at C$1.0632 to the
greenback, or 94.06 U.S. cents, modestly stronger than
Thursday's close of C$1.0639, or 93.99 U.S. cents.
A number of factors combined to help the Canadian dollar run
up over the last month, including higher Canadian inflation,
rising oil prices and investors rushing to cover their short
positions in the currency.
"There has been this broad-based shift overall, so it's not
like it's just been one event that has driven Canadian dollar
strength, it really has been little pieces coming together from
very different areas," said Sutton.
While the loonie has had momentum on its side so far, many
analysts expect the rally is likely reaching its peak.
Analysts will also be watching for how the Bank of Canada
reacts to the stronger-than-expected inflation figures when it
releases its next monetary policy statement in mid-July.
"Pretty quickly we're going to reach a point where the
Canadian dollar has likely gone too far," said Sutton. "I would
expect the Canadian dollar likely feels more comfortable around
C$1.08 than it does around C$1.06."
Canadian government bond prices were mostly lower across the
maturity curve, though the two-year was up 0.2
Canadian cent to yield 1.134 percent. The benchmark 10-year
was down 6 Canadian cents to yield 2.329 percent.
(Editing by Sandra Maler)