CANADA STOCKS-TSX gains for third day on energy shares, U.S. data

Thu Feb 6, 2014 11:09am EST

Related Topics

* TSX rises 93.40 points, or 0.69 percent, to 13,653.13
    * Nine of 10 main index sectors advance
    * CN Rail edges up after union deal
    * BCE climbs after quarterly report

    By John Tilak
    TORONTO, Feb 6 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index climbed
on Thursday for a third straight session as higher oil prices
buoyed energy shares and upbeat U.S. economic data lifted
broader sentiment.
    A positive quarterly report from BCE Inc provided
further support and boosted shares of the telecoms company.
    The market appeared to show signs of stabilizing after
several days of choppy trading due to concerns about emerging
markets and worries about global growth. 
    The CBOE Volatility index VIX, sometimes called Wall
Street's fear gauge, slipped after shooting up on Monday, when
U.S. equity markets dropped and the Toronto market shed more
than 200 points to hit a one-month low. 
    A report showed that the number of Americans filing new
claims for unemployment benefits fell more than expected last
week, following a wave of mixed economic data that  had
increased investor doubts about the U.S. economic recovery.
 
    "People are a little more optimistic. We've had one or two
days of stability now," said John Stephenson, senior vice
president and portfolio manager at First Asset Investment
Management. 
    "The market is focused on what it should be focused on,
which is fundamentals and earnings," he added. "In spite of all
these worries, we've got good earnings, and that's a very
positive story."
    The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
 was up 93.40 points, or 0.69 percent, at 13,653.13.
The benchmark Canadian index also moved back to positive
territory for the year.
    "The TSX will do fairly well (in 2014). Will it be up as
much as the S&P 500? No," said Stephenson, who sees the index
returning about 9 percent this year.
    Nine of the 10 main sectors on the index were higher on
Thursday.
    The energy sector jumped 1 percent. Suncor Energy Inc
 shares added 1.4 percent to C$35.70, and Canadian
Natural Resources Ltd rose 1 percent to C$38.01.
    Financials, the index's most heavily weighted sector, were
up 0.9 percent. Royal Bank of Canada advanced 1 percent
to C$69.74.
    In corporate news, Canadian National Railway Co 
reached a deal late on Wednesday to avert a strike by conductors
and yard workers after the Conservative government said it would
use back-to-work legislation to keep the railway operating. CN
Rail's stock gained 0.2 percent to C$59.57. 
    BCE shares rose 1.1 percent, to C$45.87, after the company
posted a 17 percent rise in adjusted quarterly profit and raised
its dividend.
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