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CANADA FX DEBT-C$ posts fourth straight quarterly gain on improving growth outlook

 (Adds details on activity, updates prices)
    * Canadian dollar strengthens 0.6% against the greenback
    * Canada's economy grows 0.7% in January
    * Loonie gains 1.4% for the quarter
    * Canadian bond yields rise across a steeper curve

    By Fergal Smith
    TORONTO, March 31 (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar
strengthened against its U.S. counterpart on Wednesday and
advanced for a fourth straight quarter, as data showed
faster-than-expected growth in the domestic economy and the Bank
of Canada expressed concern about housing prices.
    The Canadian dollar        was up 0.6% at 1.2560 to the
greenback, or 79.62 U.S. cents, having recovered from its lowest
intraday level in nearly three weeks on Tuesday at 1.2646.
    For the month, the loonie rose 1.4%, while it was also up
1.4% for the quarter, the strongest performance among G10
currencies.
    The Canadian economy grew 0.7% in January, surpassing
estimates for 0.5%, largely on increases in wholesale trade and
manufacturing, Statistics Canada said. A flash estimate pointed
to a 0.5% gain in February.             
    "The growth outlook for this year continues to brighten amid
sizable fiscal stimulus, an ultra-accommodative central bank,
and good news on the vaccines," said Ryan Brecht, a senior
economist at Action Economics.
    Pfizer Inc         has agreed to accelerate the delivery of
its COVID-19 vaccine to Canada, and some doses of the Johnson &
Johnson         inoculation are due to arrive at the end of
April, Canadian officials said on Tuesday.             
    Bank of Canada Governor Tiff Macklem, speaking in a
newspaper interview, said he saw worrying signs that household
indebtedness was worsening as housing prices continue to soar.
                
    Technology shares led the S&P 500 to a record high, with
investors awaiting details on U.S. President Joe Biden's massive
infrastructure plan.                 
    Canada sends about 75% of its exports to the United States,
including oil. U.S. crude        prices settled 2.3% lower at
$59.16 a barrel on concerns about the market's recovery after
OPEC and its allies lowered their 2021 demand growth forecast.
            
    Canadian government bond yields rose across a steeper curve
in tandem with U.S. Treasuries. The 10-year             was up 3
basis points at 1.564%.

 (Reporting by Fergal Smith; Editing by Bernadette Baum and
Peter Cooney)
  
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