CANADA STOCKS-TSX hits two-week high as Yellen remarks offer support

Thu Nov 14, 2013 11:19am EST
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* TSX rises 79.27 points, or 0.59 percent, to 13,449.93
    * Nine of 10 main index sectors advance
    * CGI Group jumps after posting results

    By John Tilak
    TORONTO, Nov 14 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index
advanced to a two-week high on Thursday after Federal Reserve
head nominee Janet Yellen's indication of support for the U.S.
central bank's monetary stimulus program helped boost almost
every major sector.
    The market also digested news that the euro zone economy
stagnated in the third quarter of the year, weighed by weakness
in both France and Germany. 
    Investors looking for signs of monetary policy direction
from Yellen got a taste of it from her prepared remarks released
on Wednesday.
    Yellen, President Barack Obama's nominee to lead the Federal
Reserve, is expected to offer a strong defense on Thursday of
the central bank's aggressive monetary easing before a Senate
    "She is considered a dovish candidate, which I think is
market-friendly," said Rick Hutcheon, president and chief
operating officer at RKH Investments. "It's probably bullish for
the market in the shorter term." 
    The timing of the implementation of any pullback in stimulus
could be less aggressive with Yellen at the helm, he added.
    The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
 was up 79.27 points, or 0.59 percent, at 13,449.93,
after reaching 13,457.33, its highest level since Oct. 31.
    Hutcheon sees the Canadian index climbing as resource stocks
benefit from growth in the global economy. "The Canadian market
and the Canadian economy (are) in a pretty good spot right now,"
he said. 
    Nine of the 10 main sectors on the index were higher on
    Financial shares added 0.4 percent, with Royal Bank of
Canada rising 0.4 percent to C$71.33 and Toronto
Dominion Bank gaining 0.5 percent to C$97.18.
    The materials sector, which includes mining stocks, climbed
as gold-mining stocks surged 2.5 percent, reflecting a jump in
the price of bullion.
    Goldcorp Inc was up 2 percent, at C$25.80.
    In corporate news, CGI Group Inc posted a
better-than-expected adjusted profit for the fourth quarter,
sending shares of the technology services company up 7 percent
to C$40.25. 
    Turquoise Hill Resources Ltd dropped 6.7 percent to
C$4.32 after the miner said that it planned a rights offering,
citing permitting issues that have delayed financing for the
expansion of its Oyu Tolgoi copper-gold mine in Mongolia run by
Rio Tinto.