CANADA STOCKS-TSX boosted by banks, U.S. data

Tue Aug 25, 2009 10:51am EDT
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* TSX rises 1.09 percent to 10,907.86.

* Bank of Montreal results top forecasts, other banks rise

* U.S. data supports view of stabilizing economy

By Ka Yan Ng

TORONTO, Aug 25 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index shot higher on Tuesday morning on a positive start to this week's raft of quarterly banking results and further data pointing to a recovering U.S. economy.

Bank of Montreal BMO.TO, Canada's fourth-largest bank kicked off third-quarter earnings season for the nation's big five lenders with a surprisingly solid performance, defying investors who had spent the last week selling its shares. [ID:nN24133906].

The results bode well for the rest of country's banks this week and lifted the hefty financials group 2.54 percent. Bank of Montreal was up 5 percent at C$51.43.

All the large lenders were among the top 10 most influential movers of the session so far, led by the biggest bank, Royal Bank of Canada RY.TO, which was up 3.1 percent at C$52.25. Insurers were also strong performers, including Manulife Financial MFC.TO, up 3 percent at C$23.06.

"Bank of Montreal surprised everyone towards the higher end of estimates," said Michael Sprung, president of Sprung & Co. Investment Counsel.   Continued...