CANADA STOCKS-TSX extends gains for 6th straight session

Mon Apr 26, 2010 5:43pm EDT
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* TSX ends up 0.34 percent at 12,280.97

* Royal Bank hits lifetime high on upgrade

* RIM shows new operating system, stock rebounds (Updates with details, background)

By Ka Yan Ng

TORONTO, April 26 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index finished higher for a sixth straight session on Monday, helped by strength in consumer discretionary issues and financials.

Royal Bank of Canada RY.TO hit a record high of C$62.25 during the session on a ratings upgrade, and closed the day up 0.8 percent at C$62.20.

Royal, the country's biggest bank, was upgraded to "outperform" from "market perform" by BMO Capital Markets, while Genuity Capital Markets raised its price targets for all of Canada's six big banks. [ID:nSGE63P0Q0] [ID:nWNA9499]

Bank of Montreal BMO.TO hit a 52-week high, ending the session up 0.74 percent at C$65.41, following its announcement that its U.S. unit will acquire assets of Amcore, a U.S. lender. [ID:nN23255705]

The acquisition follows a similar deal by Toronto-Dominion Bank TD.TO, and is seen as the start of a pickup in a long-awaited series of acquisitions by big Canadian banks, which weathered the financial crisis better that most of their global peers. [ID:nN2690352]   Continued...