* C$ finishes at 82.67 U.S. cents
* Retreat breaks week of gains
* Short-covering blamed for currency's fall
* Bond prices flat to lower
(Updates to close, adds details quote)
TORONTO, April 16 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar tumbled
more than 1 U.S. cent from the 13-week high it raced to earlier
on Thursday as its move through a key level sparked a wave of
selling as traders felt it got ahead of itself.
The Canadian dollar fell to C$1.2148 to the U.S. dollar, or
82.32 U.S. cents, by early afternoon, down from an earlier high
of C$1.1982 to the U.S. dollar, or 83.46 U.S. cents.
The currency cracked the C$1.20 level early in the session
in the aftermath of data that showed Canadian factory sales
rose in February for the first time since July, thanks to a
slight rebound in the battered auto sector. [ID:nN17446129]
But the dollar's rise was short-lived as it encountered a
wave of downward pressure moments after it breached C$1.20 as
traders appeared uncomfortable with it at such lofty levels
given its impressive rally off a four-year low last month.
"It felt like Canada was really forced below C$1.20 and
after the level broke it just felt like the Canada buying had
disappeared and the market was all caught long Canada, and it's
just been a bit of a chase all afternoon," said Steve Butler,
director of foreign exchange trading at Scotia Capital.
North American equities rallied late in the day, helping
the currency rebounded somewhat from its session lows as
investors flocked to riskier assets.
The Canadian currency finished at C$1.2096 to the U.S.
dollar, or 82.67 U.S. cents, down from C$1.2032 to the U.S.
dollar, or 83.11 U.S. cents, at Wednesday's close.
A growing appetite for risk amid rising optimism for a
recovery in the global economy, has helped to buoy the Canadian
dollar and weigh on the U.S. dollar's safe haven status.
However, the greenback gained on Thursday, supported by
weak economic readings, including U.S. housing starts and
building permits figures. [FRX/]
Investors will now be looking ahead to Canada's consumer
price index for March due before the market open on Friday.
BONDS FLAT TO LOWER
Domestic bond prices were flat to lower across the curve,
mimicking the larger U.S. debt market as Wall Street stocks
gained and dented the appeal for safe-haven government bonds.
"Bonds have held in reasonably well given the rebound in
equities," said Mark Chandler, fixed income strategist at RBC
Capital Markets. "It's beginning to weigh on them a little at
this stage now."
"In terms of Canada, specifically, there has been sort of
increased issuance that is providing a little pressure," he
Thursday's domestic factory data also helped to keep the
pressure on Canadian bonds.
The two-year bond was largely flat, up 2 Canadian cents at
C$100.28 to yield 1.118 percent, while the 10-year bond slipped
17 Canadian cents to C$106.88 to yield 2.957 percent.
The 30-year bond pulled back 60 Canadian cents at C$122.55
to yield 3.703 percent. In the United States, the 30-year
treasury yielded 3.7230 percent.
Canadian bonds mostly outperformed their U.S. counterparts,
with the 30-year 2 basis points below its U.S. counterpart,
compared to 1.10 basis points above on Wednesday.
(Reporting by Jennifer Kwan and Frank Pingue; editing by Rob