TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index rose to its highest close in more than a week on Wednesday led by railways, after Canadian Pacific disclosed a takeover bid, and helped by pipeline companies and a bounce back for gold miners.
The index extended earlier gains after the release of minutes from the last U.S. Federal Reserve policy meeting bolstered bets on a December interest rate hike.
The most influential gainer on the index was Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd CP.TO, which rose 5.6 percent to C$194.94 after the company made public a proposal to buy Norfolk Southern that it said could help it save $1.8 billion.
Its rival, Canadian National Railway Co CNR.TO, advanced 2.3 percent to C$78.72.
The overall industrials group gained 2 percent, while the materials group rose 2.6 percent as gold miners rebounded despite only minor gains for bullion. [GOL/]
Goldcorp Inc G.TO gained 4 percent to C$15.83 and Barrick Gold Corp ABX.TO added 3.7 percent to C$9.63.
“A bulk of the pressure from commodities and commodity stocks are probably behind us,” said Sid Mokhtari, market technician and director of institutional equity research at CIBC World Markets. “We’ve already had a massive amount of selling.”
Teck Resources Ltd TCKb.TO gained 1 percent to C$6.29 after the largest producer of steel-making coal in North America said it would cut its work force by about 9 percent.
Mokhtari said investors may shuffle from commodity stocks and utilities into financials including insurance companies as the Fed gets closer to raising rates and the U.S. dollar continues to strengthen.
The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE settled up 119.58 points, or 0.90 percent, at 13,399.97.
Nine of the index’s 10 main groups gained, with energy stocks slipping 0.25 percent.
Suncor Energy SU.TO, the country’s largest oil and gas producer, declined 2.8 percent to C$37.48 after it said 2016 capital spending will increase and production will slip.
Canadian Oil Sands Ltd COS.TO, which Suncor has offered to buy, fell 4.9 percent to C$8.98.
Those losses were offset by gains for pipeline companies. Enbridge Inc ENB.TO advanced 1.3 percent to C$50.28 and TransCanada Corp TRP.TO gained 1.6 percent to C$43.14.
U.S. crude CLc1 prices settled up 0.2 percent at $40.75 a barrel, while Brent LCOc1 added 1.5 percent to $44.24.[O/R]
Editing by James Dalgleish and Tom Brown