TSX halts four-day skid, gold miners soar on results

Thu Oct 25, 2012 5:26pm EDT
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By Solarina Ho

TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index finished sharply higher on Thursday as strong results from miners Goldcorp Inc (G.TO: Quote) and Agnico Eagle Mines Ltd (AEM.TO: Quote), as well as encouraging global economic data, helped lift stocks across most sectors.

Goldcorp, Canada's second-biggest gold miner, posted a 48 percent rise in quarterly profit, sending its shares surging 6.89 percent to C$43.60. It was the most heavily weighted riser on the index.

Fellow gold producer Agnico Eagle was another top gainer, soaring 8.93 percent to C$55.97 after the company posted record gold production and boosted its output forecast for the year by 5 percent. The results also led some analysts to hike their price target.

"It's been earnings driven to a large extent, especially in the materials sector and the solid earnings from the gold producers," said Elvis Picardo, strategist and vice president of research at Global Securities.

"The earnings and misses and disappointments have been much higher on the U.S. side than they have been so far in Canada. We are beginning to see some appetite once again for the materials stock and so on, so that's lending support to the TSX."

Goldcorp and Agnico Eagle's results helped boost the index's materials group, which rose 2.15 percent. Barrick Gold (ABX.TO: Quote), Canada's biggest gold miner, was up 2.37 percent at C$39.25.

The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE broke a four-day skid, climbing 105.21 points, or 0.86 percent, to 12,300.23. Eight of the index's 10 main groups were higher.

The energy group was up 0.8 percent, and financials gained 0.35 percent. Together the three sectors make up nearly 75 percent of the index's weight.   Continued...

A Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) logo is seen in Toronto November 9, 2007. REUTERS/Mark Blinch