CANADA STOCKS-TSX rises 5th day on Barrick, commodity prices gain

Wed Apr 24, 2013 11:10am EDT

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* TSX rises 73.13 points, or 0.60 percent, to 12,164.07
    * Nine of 10 main sectors advance
    * Barrick climbs 3.3 percent after results

    By John Tilak
    TORONTO, April 24 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index
advanced for a fifth straight session on Wednesday, helped by a
jump in Barrick Gold Corp shares and gains in other
materials and energy stocks as commodity prices rose.
    But gains were capped by orders for long-lasting U.S.
manufactured goods, which recorded the biggest drop in seven
months in March and a gauge of planned business spending, which 
rose modestly. Wednesday's U.S. data pointed to a slowdown in
economic activity. 
    Barrick, the world's biggest gold miner, rose 3.3 percent
after it said it was scaling back capital spending and had
progress in controlling costs, while reporting a drop in
first-quarter profit. Still, earnings were slightly ahead of
market expectations. 
    "The market is rallying off what appears to be a respectable
quarter," said Matt Skipp, president of SW8 Asset Management. 
    "It's (Barrick) the most oversold and heavily shorted major
gold company in North America. It probably deserves a bounce
today," he added.
    Barrick shares, which rose to C$18.60, are off 58 percent
since hitting a 52-week high in June 2012.
    The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
 was up 73.13 points, or 0.60 percent, at 12,164.07. 
    The gains over the past week have not been enough to recover
from the index's huge selloff earlier this month, triggered by a
rout in commodity prices, including the biggest single-day drop
in gold prices ever.
    Nine of the 10 main sectors on the index were higher on
Wednesday.
    Barrick's jump and higher gold prices helped the materials
sector rise 2.3 percent.
    Gold shares, down about 35 percent on the year, were up 3.3
percent. 
    Energy shares climbed 0.7 percent as oil prices rose.
    In other earnings news, shares of Cenovus Energy,
Canada's No. 2 independent oil producer, rose nearly 1 percent
to C$29.01 after it posted a quarterly operating profit that
beat analysts' estimates.
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