July 27, 2018 / 11:41 AM / a year ago

TSX edges higher as gains in financials limit tech decline

(Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index was slightly higher on Friday, as financial stocks helped offset losses in technology stocks.

A sign board displaying Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) stock information is seen in Toronto June 23, 2014. REUTERS/Mark Blinch

At 9:56 a.m. ET (1356 GMT), the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index was up 15.65 points, or 0.1 percent, at 16,471.38.

Seven of the index’s 11 major sectors were higher, led by a 0.3 percent gain in the financial sector.

Financials were boosted by an about 0.4 percent rise in shares of Toronto-Dominion Bank and Brookfield Asset Management and a 0.2 percent rise in Royal Bank of Canada.

The Canadian dollar was little changed against its U.S. counterpart as the loonie held on to this week’s gains even after data showed the U.S. economy expanded at its fastest clip in nearly four years.

Shares of Constellation Software fell nearly 6 percent after the company missed quarterly profit estimates. The stock was the top laggard on the TSX and the biggest drag on the information technology sector, which slid 1.6 percent.

Mexican Economy Secretary Ildefonso Guajardo said on Thursday Mexico and the United States agreed to step up talks on updating the NAFTA trade deal in hopes of reaching an agreement on major issues by August.

Trade tensions between the United States and the European Union subsided as Europe expressed relief on Thursday after U.S. President Donald Trump and the European Commission chief agreed to tackle their trade row.

On the TSX, 111 issues were higher, while 114 issues declined for a 1.03-to-1 ratio to the downside, with 8.16 million shares traded.

Top percentage gainers on the TSX were TFI International Inc and Aecon Group. TFI jumped 12.3 percent and Aecon rose 5.6 percent after reporting higher quarterly results.

The second-biggest decliner was Cameco Corp, down 3.3 percent, after a stock downgrade following results earlier in the week.

The most heavily traded shares by volume were Aurora Cannabis, Yamana Gold Inc and Canopy Growth Co.

The TSX posted one new 52-week highs and one new low.

Across all Canadian issues there were three new 52-week highs and six new lows, with total volume of 13.09 million shares.

Reporting by Shreyashi Sanyal in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel

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