Canadian stocks turned higher on Wednesday, erasing most of the losses seen yesterday. With the rise, Toronto's main index snapped a three-session losing skid.
The S&P/TSX Composite Index has added 65.80 points or 0.74% to move at 8,890.65. Traders sifted through the results from the first day of earnings season.
Mining stocks led the way with a 3.6% gain. Teck Cominco (TCK.B.TO) surged 9.8% after the copper and zinc miner announced it sold 5.6 million shares of Kinross (K.TO) for about $101 million, with the intention of paying down down its debt.
Technology stocks posted a 3% gain. Blackberry maker Research in Motion (RIM) gained 4% after being recommended by Jim Cramer on his CNBC show Mad Money.
Energy stocks added 2.9% as oil prices turned higher on the NYMEX. Canadian Oil Sands (COS.UN.TO) gained 4.8%, Suncor (SU.TO) added 4.5% and Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO) and Vermilion Energy Trust (VET.UN.TO) each added 3%.
Light sweet crude oil ended at $49.40 per barrel, up 25 cents. Prices had dropped as low as $47.37 but later turned as high as $51.30 on the Energy Information Administration's inventory data.
Compton Petroleum Corporation (CMT.TO) dropped 2.3% after the company revised its 2009 guidance to assume a more defensive posture. The company said it currently expects daily production for 2009 to be in the range of 20,500 - 21,500 barrel of oil equivalent per day. Production was 28,658 boe per day in 2008.
In other corporate news, Nortel Networks Corp. (NT.TO) surged 32.6% amid reports in the Wall Street Journal the bankrupt network solutions company has received an offer from Nokia Siemens Networks to buy key assets. Both companies declined comment on the report.
Corus Entertainment (CJR-B.TO) added.31% after the company said its second-quarter net income amounted to C$29.0 million or C$0.36 per share, compared to C$35.4 million or C$0.41 per share in the year-ago quarter.
Open Text Corp. (OTC.TO) gained.5% after the company said it acquired Toronto-based Vizible Corporation, a privately held maker of digital media interface solutions.
Forzani Group Ltd. (FGL.TO) added 1.7%. The company announced a decline in fourth quarter net earnings to C$24.17 million, or C$0.79 per share, from C$28.7 million, or C$0.85 per share in the prior year. The company noted that Athletes World stores added C$200,000 or C$0.01 per share to consolidated net earnings.
Canadian National Railway (CNR.TO) rose 2.7% after the company announced it will sell its Weston Subdivision to GO Transit for expanded GO service between Union Station and regions northwest of the city. The purchase is valued at C$160 million.
On the economic front, data released by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation revealed the seasonally adjusted annual rate of Canadian housing starts increased to 154,700 units in March from 136,100 units in February.
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