CANADA STOCKS-CN Rail results help drive TSX to record high

Tue Jul 22, 2014 4:52pm EDT

* TSX up 65.14 points, or 0.43 percent, to 15,315.13
    * Index rose as high as 15,343.51
    * CN Rail leads pack after upbeat earnings

 (Adds portfolio manager's comment, updates prices to close)
    By Alastair Sharp
    TORONTO, July 22 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index
pushed to new highs for the fourth time in five sessions on
Tuesday, helped by rises in the shares of energy companies,
railways and some banks.
    Canadian National Railway, the country's biggest
railway, was the index's major positive force, up 2 percent at
C$74.39, after it reported record quarterly freight volumes
after the bell on Monday and lifted its 2014 financial
forecasts. 
    The series of record highs on the Toronto stock market has
spurred some investors to point to stretched valuations, but
others counter that earnings justify the optimism and that
bargains can still be found in unloved but solid names.
    "I'm very happy and I continue to find lots of opportunities
and ideas each and every day," said Barry Schwartz, a portfolio
manager at Baskin Financial.  
    "Just because the market is at a fresh high doesn't mean you
can't find stocks that are near their 52-week lows, or stocks
that haven't participated in the rally," he said, pointing to
Rogers Communications Inc and Cineplex Inc as
examples of unexciting stocks with good prospects that he and
his firm hold.  
    The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
 ended up 65.14 points, or 0.43 percent, at 15,315.13,
a record closing high. The day's high, 15,343.51, was a record
intraday high.
    John Ing, president of Maison Placements Canada, credited
the continuation of the U.S. Federal Reserve's stimulative
quantitative easing (QE) program for the strength of global
financial markets. 
    "Markets are trading on the upper end of their valuations.
And that's a reflection of optimism about the continuation of
QE," he said. "Some of the oils are among the big traders,
they're looking a little bit better. The oil price is
$102-plus." 
    In the oil and gas group, Suncor Energy Inc gained
0.8 percent to C$44.94, and Canadian Natural Resources 
was up 1 percent at C$48.96. 
    With trading volumes light, Ing said the market's moves
shouldn't be studied too closely. "It's a very listless week;
that's what it's turning out to be." 
    Major gold miners were among the heaviest weights on the
index, with Goldcorp Inc off 1.2 percent at C$29.48, and
Barrick Gold Corp down 1.5 percent at C$20.21 as the
spot price of bullion slipped. 
    Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc dropped
2.4 percent to C$131.48 as its acquisition target Allergen asked
for more transparent reports on Valeant's business. 
    Bank of Nova Scotia was 0.7 percent higher at
C$73.32 and Bank of Montreal added 0.6 percent to
C$81.90.
    ($1=$1.07 Canadian)

 (Editing by Chizu Nomiyama; and Peter Galloway)