CANADA STOCKS-TSX flat as mining drop offset by Open Text, Encana

Tue Nov 5, 2013 5:10pm EST
 
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* TSX falls 0.07 of a point to 13,361.71
    * Six of 10 main index sectors decline
    * Open Text jumps 10 percent on company's acquisition move
    * Encana climbs 3.3 percent on restructuring plans

    By John Tilak
    TORONTO, Nov 5 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index was
virtually unchanged on Tuesday as strong gains in information
technology company Open Text Corp and natural gas
producer Encana Corp offset weakness in gold-mining
shares.
    Open Text's shares soared 10 percent to C$85.32 after the
software maker said it would buy privately held cloud services
company GXS Group Inc for $1.17 billion. They had the biggest
positive influence on the market. 
    Encana surged more than 3 percent after the company said it
will cut about 20 percent of its workforce and spin off assets.
    Investors digested mixed U.S. economic data that showed
service-sector business activity picking up in October, but new
order growth slowed for a second straight month. 
    Uncertainty about whether the European Central Bank will cut
interest rates and what direction the U.S. Federal Reserve will
take with its monetary stimulus also undermined sentiment.
    The Toronto Stock Exchange's benchmark S&P/TSX composite
index has gained nearly 5 percent in the past month, benefiting
from improving global macroeconomic conditions.
    "We think we're going to end the year on a strong note
because there's still a lot of money on the sidelines," said
Elvis Picardo, strategist and vice president of research at
Global Securities in Vancouver. "That money has to be put to
work."
    The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
 closed down 0.07 of a point at 13,361.71. Six of the
10 main sectors on the index were lower.
    Gold miners fell more than 1 percent. Among them, Goldcorp
Inc gave back 0.5 percent to C$25.97.
    Shares of energy producers were little changed, with a 0.6
percent drop in Canadian Natural Resources Ltd offset
by the gain in Encana. 
    Encana, which advanced to C$19.21, said it will invest
nearly three-quarters of its 2014 capital spending budget in its
more lucrative oil and liquid gas assets. 
    "They're doing the right thing, but they probably should've
done it two years ago, when (natural gas) prices tanked," said
David Cockfield, managing director and portfolio manager at
Northland Wealth Management. "It's a recognition of the reality
that gas prices are low and going lower."