CANADA STOCKS-Positive U.S. data helps drive TSX higher

Thu Nov 5, 2009 5:00pm EST
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* TSX finishes up 109.50 points at 11,180.70

* U.S. economic data helps index higher

* Sun Life, Manulife fall after earnings reports (Adds quote, details)

By Jennifer Kwan

TORONTO, Nov 5 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index finished higher on Thursday as U.S. business productivity and weekly jobs data helped to lift investor confidence in the economic recovery.

The figures showed third-quarter business productivity grew at the fastest pace in six years and that new claims for jobless aid fell to a 10-month low last week, indicating the decline in the labor market may be hitting bottom. [ID:nN05106320]

"The U.S. productivity numbers basically shot the lights out. It was a really good print," said Lex Kerkovius, senior research analyst at McLean & Partners Wealth Management Ltd in Calgary.

Among the top Toronto gainers were Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO: Quote), up 2.5 percent at C$55.58, and Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD.TO: Quote), which climbed 2.9 percent to C$64.80. Teck Resources TCKb.TO was up 4.8 percent at C$33.38.

As well, Kerkovius said rosy earnings results from U.S. technology bellwether Cisco (CSCO.O: Quote), released on Wednesday, helped to boost sentiment. [ID:nN04515993]   Continued...