May 3, 2013 / 8:48 PM / 7 years ago

CANADA STOCKS-TSX hits 3-week high on U.S. jobs data

* TSX rises 58.39 points, or 0.47 percent, to 12,438.03
    * Eight of the 10 main index sectors advance
    * Air Canada slips after reporting drop in quarterly revenue

    By John Tilak
    TORONTO, May 3 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index closed
higher on Friday, but off the three-week high it hit earlier on
the day when a stronger-than-expected U.S. jobs report
galvanized the market.
    Still, the advance pushed the benchmark index into positive
territory on the year and helped it clock a gain of 1.8 percent
on the week.
    Data showed U.S. employment rose more than expected in
April, pushing the unemployment rate to a four-year low of 7.5
percent and easing concern that the economy faced a sharp
    "It tells us the underlying private economy in the United
States is acting a little better," said Michael Sprung,
president of Sprung Investment Management.
    "The good news in the United States is the manufacturing
economy seems to be coming back, housing appears to have
stabilized and consumers have delevered to the point where they
can come back into the market," he added.
     The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
 closed up 58.39 points, or 0.47 percent, at 12,438.03.
The day's high was 12,533.83, the index's highest level since
April 11.
    "People seem to have had some of their faith rekindled and
restored," said Fred Ketchen, director of equity trading at
ScotiaMcLeod. "(The U.S. jobs report) indicates economic
activity continues to move modestly higher."
    Eight of the 10 main sectors of the index were higher. 
    Energy shares rose 0.7 percent, getting a boost from higher
oil prices. In the group, Suncor Energy Inc rose
0.9 percent to C$31.09. 
    The materials sector, which includes mining stocks, was up 1
percent, and financials, the index's most heavily weighted
sector, gained 0.2 percent. 
    In company news, Air Canada reported a 3 percent
decline in first-quarter revenue due in part to a drop in
premium travel demand and tough pricing competition. Its shares
fell 6.3 percent to C$2.70. 
    BlackBerry stock got a boost early in the day after
an analyst said the company's new Q10 smartphone, which comes
with a physical keyboard, is selling well in Canada and Britain.
The stock ended the day 0.4 percent lower at C$15.77, however.
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