CANADA STOCKS-TSX up on China data, signs of progress in Ukraine

Wed Sep 3, 2014 11:27am EDT
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* TSX up 49.94 points, or 0.32 percent, at 15,669.02
    * Index hits another record high on global cues
    * Nine of the 10 main sectors gain

 (Adds strategist comment, details, updates prices)
    By Alastair Sharp
    TORONTO, Sept 3 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index rose
on Wednesday, boosted by news of a ceasefire agreement between
Ukraine and Russia and a rebound in Chinese economic data.
    The index scaled a fresh record, propelled by gains in
banking, industrial and energy stocks as the global outlook
    "It's a combination of things; Ukraine/Russia definitely
puts a more positive geopolitical environment over Europe, but
the other thing is we had some pretty positive data coming out
of China overnight," said Philip Petursson, from the portfolio
advisory group at Manulife Asset Management.
    Despite some confusion, statements from Kiev and Moscow
appeared to indicate progress towards resolution of a festering
conflict that has put Europe on edge. 
    In China, two surveys showed the services sector rebounded
in August, offsetting manufacturing weakness. 
Canada's resource-heavy index is sensitive to positive signs out
of China.
    The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
 was up 49.94 points, or 0.32 percent, at 15,669.02 by
late morning. It hit 15,685.13 at one point, the latest in a
string of record highs this year as resource stocks bounce.
    Nine of the 10 main sectors moved higher.
    The energy sector has gained roughly 17 percent so
far this year as investors bought into undervalued stocks.
    "For this rally on the cyclical side to continue we need
global growth to kick in," Petursson said.
    He said valuations were still on the low end of fair value
for many oil and gas names, including Suncor Energy Inc,
which was up 0.6 percent at C$43.91.
    Elsewhere, Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc jumped 4.1
percent to C$34.60 after the convenience store and gas station
operator posted solid results and said it had agreed to sell its
aviation fuel business. 
    At the other end of the spectrum, Canexus Corp 
shares fell 9.9 percent to C$4.82 after the chemical company
said it was suing MEG Energy Corp for refusing it
access to a pipeline. 
    Analysts at CIBC called the development a "nightmare" in a
note to clients. MEG was up 0.7 percent at C$38.31.

 (Editing by Bernadette Baum)