*TSX up 0.34 percent at 12,154.63
*Materials, financials lead index higher
By Claire Sibonney
TORONTO, April 21 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index was gaining for a third straight session on Wednesday morning as robust North American earnings whetted investor appetite.
The index’s weighty materials sector was up 0.5 percent. In the sector, shares of Teck Resources TCKb.TO, the country’s largest base-metals miner, gained 0.2 percent to C$41.78, after the company reported its first-quarter profit more than tripled. [ID:nN20129089]
The index’s energy group was little changed with EnCana Corp (ECA.TO), Canada’s largest natural gas producer, falling 0.2 percent to C$31.72 despite reporting a quarterly profit that was up three-fold. [ID:nN2099238]
“Most of the earnings that we’re seeing, 75 percent, are better than what the market expects and maybe the bar is too low, but it any event because of that it’s creating a bit a of psychological positive out there,” said Irwin Michael, portfolio manager at ABC Funds.
“A lot of investors are willing to give the market the benefit of the doubt. Also the longer that the market doesn’t come off and selloff — because most people were anticipating that — the more of those investors who were sitting on a lot of cash get a little antsy and they want to see that money put to work.”
At 10:16 a.m. (1416 GMT), the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE was up 41.10 points, or 0.34 percent, at 12,154.63. Eight of its 10 sectors were higher.
In other company news, Metro Inc MRUa.TO, Canada’s No. 3 grocery chain, was up 0.1 percent at C$41.81, after it said its quarterly profit jumped even as grocery prices fell. [ID:NN21171257]
$1=$1.00 Canadian Reporting by Claire Sibonney, editing by Peter Galloway