* C$ at C$0.9857 versus US$, or $1.0145
* Ivey PMI helps C$ adds to gains notched last week
* Global stock markets lower, commodity prices mixed
By Alastair Sharp
TORONTO, Jan 7 The Canadian dollar gained
against its U.S. counterpart on Monday, with a rise in
purchasing activity for December helping the currency hold on to
rises notched late last week as investors expressed guarded
optimism about the economy.
Ivey Purchasing Managers Index data released on Monday
showed a modest increase in purchases offset by falls in its
readings for employment, inventories and prices.
The report led to a measured appreciation in the Canadian
dollar as it added some support to a robust jobs report from
Statistics Canada last Friday that pushed the currency markedly
"Either we have a delay on the day of reckoning ... or it
might well be that we are currently underestimating the pace of
growth in the Canadian economy," said Jimmy Jean, economic
strategist at Desjardins Securities in Montreal.
"The mood is currently optimistic on the markets," Jean
said, adding that the currency could get a further boost this
week if a balance of trade report due out on Friday is positive.
Global stock markets stalled on Monday, while commodity
prices were mixed after riskier assets rose last week, when the
Canadian currency gained 1 percent after strong job growth and a
partial deal reached in U.S. debt talks.
"The Canadian dollar has retained its strength from last
Friday's employment data and the move that occurred then," said
John Curran, senior vice president at CanadianForex.
The Canadian dollar ended the session trading at
C$0.9857 to the greenback, or $1.0145, stronger than Friday's
North American session close at C$0.9871, or $1.0131.
It traded in a tight 32 basis point range after moving
three-quarters of a cent on Friday.
Canada impressed investors with robust hiring data on
Friday, while U.S. employers kept up a steady pace of hiring and
manufacturing surveys pointed to growing activity in China.
Curran pointed to European data and central bank decisions
due mid-week as the next test for the Canadian currency, while
corporate earnings season is also about to kick off.
The currency also held up against the euro at
around C$1.29 as investors bet the European Central Bank will
refrain from cutting interest rates later this week.
Tiff Macklem, a senior Bank of Canada official widely tipped
to replace the departing Governor Mark Carney as head of the
central bank, may hint at a future monetary policy when he
speaks about economic growth at a university on Thursday.
"If he comes out with a hawkish stance, that will lend
itself to Canadian dollar strength," Curran said.
The two-year Canadian bond was flat to yield
1.204 percent and the benchmark 10-year bond slipped
8 Canadian cents to yield 1.946 percent.