TSX bounces back as U.S. data calms fears

Thu Oct 16, 2014 5:05pm EDT
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By John Tilak and Alastair Sharp

TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index jumped on Thursday as positive U.S. economic data helped ease concerns about global growth, boosting shares in most major sectors.

Investors were encouraged by data showing that the number of Americans filing new claims for jobless benefits fell to a 14-year low last week and industrial output rose in September.

The market initially tumbled to an eight-month low but then recovered to record its first gain in the last five sessions. The energy sector, which has been battered in the last three months over concerns about oil demand, rebounded sharply and had the biggest positive influence on the market.

Worries about the direction of the global economy and fears that the U.S. Federal Reserve might raise interest rates have hit equity markets hard in recent weeks.

The Toronto stock market's benchmark TSX index has lost more than 10 percent of its value since reaching a record high last month.

"The realization has come that the United States is linked to global growth, and they cannot carry the weight of global demand on their own," said Roland Chalupka, chief investment officer of Fiduciary Trust Canada, a unit of Franklin Templeton Investments.

"Sentiment for Canadian equities is tentative,” he added. “(It) is getting worse in the commodity-driven sectors.”

Chalupka, who helps manage about C$1.6 billion in assets, said that the Canadian equity market was “richly valued” despite the recent pullback.   Continued...

A sign board displaying Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) stock information is seen in Toronto June 23, 2014.  REUTERS/Mark Blinch