CANADA STOCKS-TSX little changed; rising BCE offsets energy drop

Wed Aug 8, 2012 12:37pm EDT
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* Main index down 11.7 points, or 0.1 percent, at 11,852.06
    * BCE biggest positive influence after strong results
    * RIM gains on suggestions licensing deal coming
    * Air Canada tumbles as loss grows
    * Energy stocks weigh

    By Alastair Sharp
    TORONTO, Aug 8 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index was
little changed at midday on Wednesday after two sessions of
strong gains as a jump in BCE Inc shares due to solid
earnings and a dividend boost helped offset declining energy
    Second-quarter profit for BCE, the parent of Bell Canada and
the country's largest telecom company, beat expectations as
wireless and media-arm growth spurred the company to lift its
full-year earnings outlook and dividend payout. 
    Its shares gained 3.5 percent to C$44.76, the single biggest
positive influence on the index.
    "There is still a huge demand for yield and Bell will hit
that category," said Paul Hand, a managing director at RBC
Capital Markets.
    Research In Motion Ltd also gained, rising 5.1
percent to C$7.69 a day after an influential analyst suggested
the BlackBerry maker could revive talks to license its new
operating system to smartphone leader Samsung Electronics.
    The gains helped offset the impact of weak data from major
European economies Germany and Britain, which contributed to the
commodity price declines that hurt resource shares on the index.
    Among the heaviest weights were Enbridge Inc, down
0.9 percent at C$39.63, Suncor Energy, which dipped 0.5
percent to C$32.06, and TransCanada Corp, which slipped
1.7 percent to C$45.29.
    Air Canada fell 8.7 percent to C$1.05 after the
country's largest airline posted a bigger quarterly loss and
said labor disruptions and the closure of its plane maintenance
contractor crimped its operations. 
    At 12:05 p.m. (1605 GMT) the Toronto Stock Exchange's
S&P/TSX composite index was down 11.7 points, or 0.1
percent, at 11,852.06. On Tuesday it closed at its highest level
since July 4.
    Shares of Silver Wheaton Corp rose 3.9 percent
while HudBay Minerals Inc inched up 0.3 percent on a
deal that will see Silver Wheaton help finance the development
of HudBay's Constancia mine in Peru in exchange for the right to
purchase precious metal byproducts from the base metal miner.
    Rona Inc, the big Canadian home-improvement chain
that has rejected a takeover proposal from U.S. competitor
Lowe's Cos Inc, gained 1.1 percent to C$13.90 after both its
adjusted earnings and revenue rose.