* TSX up 56.27 points, or 0.41 percent, at 13,840.57
* Encana deal helps spur energy sector rally
* Manulife, BCE fall after results disappoint
* Five of the 10 main groups advance (Adds details)
By Solarina Ho
TORONTO, Feb 10 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index rose on Thursday as a major Chinese investment in Canada’s natural gas sector helped boost energy shares, overcoming disappointing results from several blue chips.
Energy issues rebounded from a four-day decline as Encana Corp (ECA.TO) jumped 4.47 percent to C$32.02 on news of its C$5.4 billion deal to sell a stake in a British Columbia shale gas project to state oil company PetroChina (0857.HK). [ID:nSGE71908F]
“What it underscores is the fact that companies and countries looking for resource exposure and resources to fill their needs going forward are looking to Canada,” said Bob Gorman, chief portfolio strategist at TD Securities.
“That will likely augur well for the resource sector going forward.”
Suncor Energy (SU.TO) climbed 1.58 percent to C$41.13, while Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO) rose 1.84 percent to C$44.22. The overall energy group rose 1.19 percent, despite lackluster movement in oil prices. [O/R]
The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE reversed earlier losses to finish up 56.27 points, or 0.41 percent, at 13,840.57.
Five of the TSX’s 10 main groups made gains. Research In Motion RIM.TO rose 5.5 percent to C$66.70 to help the overall tech sector advance 0.79 percent.
The heavyweight financials group rose 0.3 percent, with Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS.TO) ahead 1.95 percent at C$59.19.
Disappointing earnings kept the gains in check, however, with blue-chip companies Manulife Financial (MFC.TO) and Thomson Reuters (TRI.TO), and BCE (BCE.TO) leading declines.
Manulife slumped 5.13 percent to C$17.95. The insurer’s profit more than doubled from a year earlier in the fourth quarter, and rebounded from a steep third-quarter loss, but it failed to live up to the market’s lofty expectations. [ID:nN08136113]
Thomson Reuters fell 2.68 percent to close at C$39.96. Its quarterly earnings fell short of market forecasts as heavy investment in new products weighed on operating margins, although the company said it expects revenue to pick up in 2011. [ID:nN09100522]
Telecom provider BCE was off 1.23 percent at C$36.14 after its results came in slightly below expectations. [ID:nN10262604]
($1=$1.00 Canadian) (With additional reporting by Claire Sibonney, Ka Yan Ng and Jeffrey Hodgson; editing by Peter Galloway)