* TSX ends up 28.70 points, or 0.24 percent, to 12,140.33
* First Quantum falls 1.6 pct after Inmet turns down its bid
* Inmet rises 18 pct
* Banks gain ahead of earnings this week, Royal up 0.6 pct
By Claire Sibonney
TORONTO, Nov 28 Canadian stocks recovered from a
one-week low to end higher on Wednesday, led by financial shares
on expectations of healthy bank earnings and by Inmet Mining
Corp, which jumped 18 percent after it turned down a
hostile takeover bid.
The base metals miner, which turned down the unsolicited
offer from larger competitor First Quantum Minerals,
whose shares were down 1.6 percent, also said it had adopted a
shareholder rights plan, which will allow it time to consider
other bids or to seek alternatives to a takeover.
"I think, hopefully, Inmet shareholders will see some of the
big boys come in and look to top the bid. We'll see," said Barry
Schwartz, portfolio manager at Baskin Financial Services, who
owns Inmet stock.
The late-day rebound on the index also followed comments
from a top Republican that fueled hopes for a U.S. budget deal
that would avert the "fiscal cliff" of tax hikes and spending
cuts that threatens to drag the United States back into
U.S. House of Representative Speaker John Boehner said
Republicans were willing to put revenues on the table to get a
U.S. fiscal deal if Democrats agreed to spending cuts. President
Barack Obama, speaking later in the day, said he hoped to get a
deal done in the next four weeks.
"The market is fixated on the perception of which way the
talks on the fiscal cliff are going. That's the single biggest
driver," said Elvis Picardo, strategist and vice president of
research at Global Securities.
"The underlying tone of the market is positive. There is
hope that some resolution will be achieved. Barring any
macroeconomic shocks, we're looking for a positive close for the
end of the year," Picardo said of the outlook for the TSX.
The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
ended up 28.70 points, or 0.24 percent, at 12,140.33.
The TSX is up about 1.5 percent since the start of the year.
The financial sector, the biggest on the index, advanced 0.4
percent. Royal Bank of Canada, which will kick off the
quarterly earnings season for Canadian banks on Thursday, gained
0.6 percent at C$58.35.
"The bank earnings should be a big mover for the TSX. If
they come in pretty strong, that could be just the catalyst that
the TSX needed to get going," Picardo said.
In early dealings, Toronto's main stock index hit a
one-week low of 12,004.49, its lowest point since Nov. 20, led
down by mining and energy stocks as doubts over the resolution
of the U.S. fiscal crisis hurt investor sentiment and pulled
commodity prices lower.
"Investors are looking for a statement of how the United
States really plans to resolve this problem. So far there
doesn't seem to be a plan," said Fred Ketchen, director of
equity trading at ScotiaMcLeod.
Material and energy stocks, which make up more than half the
index's weight, rebounded from the weak start, rising 0.5
percent and 0.4 percent respectively. Natural gas producer
EnCana Corp was the biggest heavyweight gainer, jumping
3.2 percent to C$21.65.
Other big movers included Research In Motion Ltd,
up nearly 3 percent to C$11.00 as investors focused on a move by
a U.S. fund manager to expand its holding in the smartphone
maker ahead of next year's launch of RIM's make-or-break
BlackBerry 10 line.
SNC-Lavalin Group lost 2.3 percent to C$39.99 after
the Quebec-based engineering and construction company's former
chief executive was arrested on three fraud-related charges,
adding to a series of allegations about the company's ethics.
Canadian Tire Corp Ltd agreed to buy closely held
hockey chain Pro Hockey Life Sporting Goods Inc for C$85
million. Its shares were down 0.9 percent at C$75.50.