CANADA STOCKS-TSX hits record high as CP Rail jumps on earnings

Thu Jul 17, 2014 11:16am EDT
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* TSX up 32.22 points, or 0.21 percent, at 15,258.56
    * Five of the 10 main index sectors advance
    * CP Rail shares at record high after results
    * Loblaw slips after management changes

    By John Tilak
    TORONTO, July 17 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index edged
up to a record high on Thursday, boosted by a jump in shares of
Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd after the company reported
a quarterly profit that beat market expectations. 
    CP Rail climbed 3.6 percent to a record high for the stock
after reporting an increase in second-quarter earnings as it
worked to recover from backlogs and a harsh winter. Late in the
morning it was trading at C$204.60. 
    The market had opened lower on concerns about the
implications of a wave of sanctions that Western powers imposed
on Russia. 
     Also working into the mix were figures that showed the
number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits
fell unexpectedly last week. But U.S. data also showed a drop in
housing starts and building permits last month. 
    The Canadian benchmark index has gained about 12 percent
this year, driven by a rally in shares of oil and gas companies
and gold miners.
    "Our view is that it's time for investors to be quite
cautious," said Michael Sprung, president of Sprung Investment
Management. "I would suggest it doesn't hurt to take some
profits off the table and have some cash on the sidelines,
should there be a bit of a market setback."
    But he noted that stocks were still more attractive than
bonds: "Even though equities are quite expensive, on a relative
basis they're the only game in town."
    The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
 was up 32.22 points, or 0.21 percent, at 15,258.56,
after touching a record high of 15,269.39 earlier in the
    The gold-mining sector climbed with the bullion price.
Goldcorp Inc rose 1.4 percent to C$29.83, and Barrick
Gold Corp added 0.7 percent to C$20.42.
    Shares of energy producers advanced 0.3 percent as they
benefited from a higher U.S. crude oil price. Canadian Natural
Resources Ltd was up 0.3 percent at C$48.28.
    Loblaw Cos Ltd named Executive Chairman Galen Weston
president of the grocery chain, replacing Vicente Trius. The
stock fell 0.9 percent to C$48.84. 
    ($1=$1.07 Canadian)

 (Editing by Peter Galloway)