Healthcare, energy shares drive gains on TSX

(Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index rose on Wednesday, led by gains in healthcare and energy shares.

The Art Deco facade of the original Toronto Stock Exchange building is seen on Bay Street in Toronto, Ontario, Canada January 23, 2019. REUTERS/Chris Helgren

* Investors shrugged off data that showed a fall in February home prices for the fifth straight month.

* At 9:50 a.m. ET (13:50 GMT), the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index was up 47 points, or 0.3 percent, at 16182.77.

* All of the index’s 11 major sectors were higher, led by the healthcare sector, which rose more than 3 percent.

* Boosting the sector was Aurora Cannabis, which surged 12.8 percent, the most on the TSX after naming billionaire investor Nelson Peltz as a strategic adviser.

* The energy sector edged up 0.8 percent on the back of higher oil prices. [O/R]

* The materials sector, which includes precious and base metals miners, rose 0.4 percent tracking gold prices, which rose as uncertainty over Britain’s exit from the European Union drove investors to safe-haven assets.

* The financial and industrial sector made nominal gains.

* On the TSX, 136 issues were higher, while 95 issues declined for a 1.43-to-1 ratio favoring gainers, with traded volume touching 46.01 million shares.

* Quebecor Inc fell 6.4 percent, the most on the TSX, after the company reported disappointing fourth-quarter results.

* The most heavily traded shares by volume were Aurora Cannabis Inc, Niko Resources Ltd and Bombardier Inc.

* The TSX posted 12 new 52-week highs and no new low.

* Across all Canadian issues, there were 43 new 52-week highs and four new lows, with total volume touching 42.76 million shares.

Reporting by Agamoni Ghosh; Editing by James Emmanuel