CANADA STOCKS-TSX climbs as China data drives gains

Wed Apr 16, 2014 11:07am EDT
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* TSX rises 69.11 points, or 0.48 percent, to 14,373.03
    * All of 10 main index sectors advance
    * Metro jumps after posting results

    By John Tilak
    TORONTO, April 16 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index
advanced on Wednesday after bullish economic data from China
boosted investor sentiment and helped drive gains in every major
    It was a mixed picture in the United States, where
industrial production rose at a faster-than-expected clip in
March but housing starts climbed less than expected and building
permits fell. 
    Data showed a 7.4 percent expansion in the Chinese economy
in the first quarter. While the growth was at its slowest pace
in 18 months, the fact that it managed to top market
expectations was enough to cheer investors. 
    The Toronto market climbed for a third straight session and
is up about 5.5 percent this year.
    "China has enough policy wiggle room and monetary buffer
room to make adjustments for continued economic expansion," said
Stan Wong, director of wealth management and portfolio manager
at Scotia McLeod. "I don't think we see a hard landing there."
     "Equity markets appear to be getting a bit fatigued as
investors contend with higher stock valuations and upcoming
seasonality," he added. "Despite the potential bumps ahead, the
cyclical trend for stocks continues to be upward."
    The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
 was up 69.11 points, or 0.48 percent, at 14,373.03. 
    "The TSX does offer value in the financial space. The banks
and insurers will continue to do well," said Wong, who is in
general more positive about U.S. stocks and has started to shift
some assets to Europe.
    All of the 10 main sectors on the index were higher on
    Financials, the index's most heavily weighted sector, rose
0.3 percent. Toronto Dominion Bank climbed 0.5 percent
to C$51.47, and Bank of Nova Scotia advanced 0.4
percent to C$64.90.
    Shares of energy producers were up 0.9 percent. Suncor
Energy Inc added 0.9 percent to C$39.74, and Canadian
Natural Resources Ltd gained 0.8 percent to C$44.12.
    In corporate news, Metro Inc shares jumped 2.5
percent, to C$65.82, after the grocer reported a
higher-than-expected quarterly profit and raised its dividend.

 (Editing by Meredith Mazzilli)