CANADA STOCKS-TSX hits 2-year high as miners gain after Fed

Wed Oct 30, 2013 4:59pm EDT
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* TSX ends up 14.72 points, or 0.11 percent, at 13,455.33
    * Gold miners lead gainers, banks help

    By Alastair Sharp
    TORONTO, Oct 30 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index rose
slightly on Wednesday with gold miners marking up strong gains
as the U.S. Federal Reserve maintained its support for a
stumbling U.S. economy.
    The index has jumped sharply in recent weeks and is at a
two-year high. In addition to miners, banking stocks have been a
solid contributor to the rise, helped by the Bank of Canada's
move to drop its explicit rate-hike bias last week.
    The Fed maintained its massive bond-buying campaign on
Wednesday as it sounded slightly more pessimistic about growth.
    With continued loose monetary policy in Canada and the
United States likely, and signs of renewed growth in the Chinese
economy, investors seem confident that the resource-rich
Canadian index can add further gains.
    "People are quite confident in the underlying strength in
the U.S. economy," said Elvis Picardo, strategist at Global
Securities in Vancouver. "It does seem that there is an
undercurrent of bullishness building up."
    "On the Canadian side we still have a bunch of earnings to
look forward to. That should hopefully provide further
confirmation that investors are on the right track here."
    The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
 ended up 14.72 points, or 0.11 percent, at 13,455.33.
It is at levels last seen in July 2011.
    Uranium miner Cameco Corp jumped 4.6 percent to
C$19.87 after reporting a sharp jump in profit on higher prices
and sales. 
    Barrick Gold Corp surged 4.1 percent to C$21.55
after a Bloomberg report that it has considered selling part of
its copper business or taking a strategic equity investment to
reduce its debt. 
    The company, the world's top gold producer, reports results
on Thursday.
    Yamana Gold Inc jumped 4.6 percent to C$10.71
despite reporting a sharp drop in profit as the company stuck to
its production outlook and said it was focused on cutting costs.
    "If you are going to be somewhere in the developed markets,
Canada looks to be a pretty good place to be if the Fed
continues to be liberal with its money," said Gavin Graham,
chief strategy officer at Integris Pension Management Corp.
    "It is the one that has lagged, and it has lagged because of
gold and materials and energy because people have been worried
about China," Graham said of the Canadian index.
    Canadian National Railway Co slipped 0.3 percent to
C$114.76 as it continues to negotiate with the Teamsters union
to avoid a labor disruption.