CANADA STOCKS-TSX advance supported by energy, BMO results

Wed May 26, 2010 5:05pm EDT
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* TSX up 25.82 pts, or 0.22 percent, at 11,543.90

* Bank of Montreal earnings help lift financials

* Three of 10 TSX sectors rise (Updates to close, adds quotes)

By Jennifer Kwan

TORONTO, May 26 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index ended slightly higher on Wednesday thanks to strength in energy shares and healthy earnings at Bank of Montreal (BMO.TO: Quote).

Bank of Montreal's forecast-topping results kicked off the quarterly earnings season for Canadian banks, and its stock rose 2.6 percent to C$60.26.

That helped the TSX financial group finish up 0.8 percent, with Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO: Quote) gaining 0.8 percent to C$59.47, and Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD.TO: Quote) up 1 percent at C$72.80.

"We've seen some good earnings from BMO, which pretty much helped the whole financial sector," said Francis Campeau, broker at MF Global Canada in Montreal.

Smaller Laurentian Bank of Canada (LB.TO: Quote) reported a 34 percent jump in profit, in line with expectations, as higher revenues offset a rise in loan losses.   Continued...