CANADA STOCKS-TSX hits one-week high as RIM shares surge
* TSX rises 43.44 points, or 0.36 percent, to 12,143.50 * Nine of the 10 main index sectors advance * Financials, materials lead index higher * Volumes light with U.S. closed for Thanksgiving holiday By John Tilak TORONTO, Nov 22 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index hit a one-week high on Thursday as Research In Motion Ltd shares jumped 16 percent on growing hopes for its new devices and as earnings expectations lifted financial stocks. The market was also supported by data that showed China's manufacturing sector was picking up steam, a sign of increased demand for Canadian resources. Research In Motion was up 16.1 percent at C$11.88 after National Bank Financial raised its price target on the stock to $15, citing "positive sentiment building in the industry" ahead of the launch of the company's BlackBerry 10 devices. The stock played the second-biggest role of any single company in leading the market higher. "The dominant news today is the performance of RIM," said John Ing, president of Maison Placements Canada. "The company has had nothing but bad news over the past year, and the stock has been oversold." At mid afternoon, the Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index was up 43.44 points, or 0.36 percent, at 12,143.50. Earlier in the session, the index hit 12,171.20, its highest level since Nov. 13. Nine of its 10 main sectors were positive. Volumes were lighter than usual due to the U.S. Thanksgiving holiday, which closed stock markets there. Just over 94 million shares had changed hands in Toronto by mid afternoon, compared with a daily average of 281.9 million in October. The financial sector rallied for a fifth day, rising another 0.4 percent ahead of the quarterly reporting season for Canadian banks, which starts next week. Expectations for solid results and possible dividend increases at some of the smaller banks have been fueling the sector, said Allan Small, senior investment advisor at DundeeWealth Inc. "(Canadian banks) are still relatively cheap when you look at where they are trading on a multiple basis. There is definitely some value there," he said. Royal Bank of Canada, the country's biggest bank, was up 0.5 percent at C$57.88, and Toronto-Dominion Bank rose 0.5 percent to C$81.07. Small said that the market's recent rise has also improved prospects for insurance companies, which have large portfolios of equities. Sun Life Financial Inc rose 0.7 percent to C$27.09, and Great-West Life gained 0.7 percent to C$23.49. The index's materials sector, which includes mining stocks, rose 0.3 percent, extending gains made in the previous session on higher prices for gold and other commodities. Miner Barrick Gold Corp was up 0.7 percent at C$35.04. Fertilizer producer Potash Corp gained 1.4 percent to C$38.77, Teck Resources Ltd rose 2 percent to C$32.39, and Silver Wheaton Corp was up 0.5 percent at C$36.50. In China, data showed expansion in the manufacturing sector accelerated in November for the first time in 13 months, a sign that the pace of economic growth has revived after seven consecutive quarters of slowdown. Industrials advanced 0.7 percent, with Canadian National Railway Co rising 1.7 percent, to C$87.23.
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