CANADA STOCKS-U.S. data helps TSX tick higher

Mon Apr 16, 2012 10:17am EDT
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* TSX up 1.4 points, or 0.06 pct, at 12,047.46
    * Banks help to lead market higher

    TORONTO, April 16 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index
inched higher on Monday after notching its seventh straight
weekly loss in the last session, buoyed by strong U.S. retail
sales data, though investors remained cautious because of rising
Spanish borrowing costs. 	
    Financials were among the heaviest gainers, with
Toronto-Dominion Bank up 0.7 percent at C$82.56 and
Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce rising 0.5 percent to
    Suncor Energy climbed 0.8 percent to C$30.68, and
Canadian Natural Resources gained 0.2  percent to
C$31.97 as the price of oil ticked higher. 	
    "I think what we're seeing here is a little bit of
confidence coming back into the market," said Fred Ketchen,
director of equity trading at Scotia McLeod, noting the strength
in banks and telecoms.	
    "Those are two areas of course where people, while they
don't know what to do in the market, look at these as
buy-and-hold things simply for the dividend payments because
they're very attractive in today's interest rate environment."	
    At 10:05 a.m. (1405 GMT), the Toronto Stock Exchange's
S&P/TSX composite index was up 1.4 points, or 0.06
percent, at 12,047.46.	
    U.S. retail sales rose more than expected in March as
Americans shrugged off high gasoline prices and bought a range
of goods, indicating economic growth in the first quarter did
not soften as much as many had feared. 	
    A recent spate of soft economic data, highlighted by the
March U.S. payrolls report, increased worry the recovery in the
economy had begun to slow.   	
    Meanwhile, market sentiment in the euro zone was still on
edge as Spain's 10-year government bond yields rose above 6
percent for the first time this year and the cost of insuring
its debt hit a record high. 	
    The economic picture in the United States was not entirely
rosy as the New York Federal Reserve said the pace of
manufacturing growth in New York state slowed sharply in April
to its lowest level in five months.  	
    Potash Corp shed a 0.5 percent to C$42.47 as corn
prices declined and the latest industry data indicated a build
in inventories of the crop nutrient. 	
    Endeavour Silver Corp. said it is buying two of
AuRico Gold's silver and gold mining interests in
Mexico for up to $250 million in cash and stock to expand its
footprint in the country. 	
    Endeavour fell 1.5 percent to C$8.96, while AuRico added 2.5
percent to C$9.14.