TSX rises for first day in four, led by gold miners
By Fergal Smith
TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index advanced on Wednesday for the first time in four sessions as a rally in gold mining and other materials stocks offset a drop in energy companies spurred by falling oil prices.
Gold mining stocks were among the most influential gainers as minutes from the Federal Reserve's latest monetary policy meeting did little to clarify expectations on the timing for its next interest rate hike.
Barrick Gold Corp rose 2.3 percent to C$21.02, while spot gold firmed 0.2 percent and the materials group, which includes precious and base metals miners and fertilizer companies, added 1.9 percent.
Teck Resources advanced 1.9 percent to C$24.74, its highest in more than two years. In recent weeks, several analysts have raised their price targets on the diversified miner.
"A lot of the high dividend paying stocks, like REITs (real estate investment trusts) and telecoms have been hurt because of fears over rising rates, and I think interest rates are going to rise but it is going to be very gradual," said Ian Nakamoto, director of research at MacDougall, MacDougall & MacTier.
The telecoms group rose 0.8 percent, including a 1.1 percent gain for BCE Inc to C$60.34, while the utilities group was up 1.2 percent.
The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index closed up 69.37 points, or 0.48 percent, at 14,618.97.
Eight of the index's 10 main groups ended higher. Continued...