CANADA STOCKS-Resource stocks stoke TSX gains

Fri Mar 15, 2013 11:28am EDT

* Stock index up 49.73 points, or 0.39 pct, at 12,849.64
    * Energy stocks lead the way
    * Mining, consumer issues also strong


    By Cameron French
    TORONTO, March 15 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index was
modestly higher on Friday as rising commodity prices pushed up
energy and mining shares while consumer stocks were helped by
strong U.S. data.
    The index's heavily weighted energy subgroup, which was the
main boost to the Canadian market on Thursday, continued to play
the role on Friday, gaining 0.95 percent as crude prices were
lifted by strong U.S. industrial production data.
 
    EnCana Corp gave the biggest upward push to the
group, rising 1.7 percent to C$20.77, while Husky Energy
 climbed 1.7 percent to C$30.53.
    Mining stocks, which have been a weight on the TSX so far
this year, rose 0.25 percent as copper and gold prices charted
modest gains on the back of weakness in the U.S. dollar.
    Iamgold led the group, rising 2.6 percent to
C$7.03, while Yamana Gold increased 1.0 percent to
C$15.06.
    "The energy stocks have been good of late. As a sector they
have broken out to the upside. Now if we can get the golds
going, that would really help the market," said John Kinsey, a
portfolio manager at Caldwell Securities in Toronto.
    At mid-morning, the Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX
composite index was up 49.73 points, or 0.39 percent,
at 12,849.64. Seven of the 10 TSX subgroups were higher.
    In a reversal of the pattern of recent sessions, the
Canadian market was outperforming the U.S. S&P 500 index 
and the Dow Jones industrial average, which were down
0.27 percent and 0.33 percent, respectively.
    The TSX has traded more or less sideways over the past two
months, while U.S. markets have pushed steadily higher.
    "We have a little catch-up to do with the Americans... (but)
I think the direction maybe is still up," Kinsey said.
    The index's consumer discretionary subgroup gained 0.68
percent, as media and retail stocks benefited from the strong
U.S. data.
    Thomson Reuters rose 3.0 percent to C$32.96, while
Canadian Tire Corp rose 1.3 percent to C$69.86.
    Telecommunications conglomerate Quebecor Inc rose
3.3 percent to C$45.09, rebounding from a sharp drop on Thursday
after the company said Chief Executive Pierre Karl Peladeau was
stepping down.
    Weighing on the market were information technology stocks.
The group slid 0.4 percent, led by BlackBerry, which was
down 1.1 percent at C$15.31.
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