CANADA STOCKS-Canadian National, energy shares spur TSX to record high
(Adds comment from portfolio manager, details on market activity, updates prices) By Alastair Sharp TORONTO, July 22 (Reuters) - Canadian National Railway and energy shares pushed Canada's main stock index higher on Tuesday, topping the record high it hit last week, as tensions eased in Ukraine. CN Rail was the index's biggest positive force, up 1.6 percent at C$74.14, after the country's biggest railway reported record volumes and lifted forecasts after the bell on Monday. Among other big gainers, Hudbay Minerals was up 4.5 percent at C$11.39 after several analysts upgraded the stock or raised their share-price targets. Hudbay is close to closing its acquisition of Augusta Resource Corp, which owns the promising Rosemont copper project in Arizona. The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index was up 45.52 points, or 0.30 percent, at 15,295.51 at midmorning. It rose as high as 15,302.23, the latest in a recent string of record highs. John Ing, president of Maison Placements Canada, credited the continuation of the U.S. Federal Reserve's stimulative quantitative easing (QE) program for the strength of global financial markets. "Markets are trading on the upper end of their valuations. And that's a reflection of optimism about the continuation of QE," he said. "Some of the oils are among the big traders, they're looking a little bit better. The oil price is $102-plus." Suncor Energy Inc gained 0.8 percent to C$44.96, and Canadian Natural Resources was up 1.1 percent at C$49. With trading volumes light, Ing said the market's moves shouldn't be studied too closely. "It's a very listless week; that's what it's turning out to be." Major gold miners were among the heaviest weights on the index, with Goldcorp Inc off 1.4 percent at C$29.40, and Barrick Gold Corp also down 1.4 percent at C$20.23 as the spot price of bullion slipped. ($1=$1.07 Canadian) (Editing by Chizu Nomiyama; and Peter Galloway)
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