RTTNews - Led by strength in the financial sector and boosted by encouraging consumer confidence, Toronto stocks jumped to their highest level in nearly eight months on Tuesday. Trading picked up volume as U.S. investors returned after Memorial Day.
The S&P/TSX Composite Index gained 216.40 points or 2.14% to end at 10,285.90. Toronto's main index posted its highest close since October 3.
Financials jumped 4.55% as a stretch of earnings announcements began for the big six banks. Bank of Montreal (BMO.TO) added 4.7% after beating estimates with its second-quarter earnings of $0.91 per share, which did come in below last year's figure of $1.19 per share.
On Thursday, Toronto-Dominion (TD.TO), Scotiabank (BNS.TO), CIBC (CM.TO) and National Bank (NA.TO) will announce results. Royal Bank (RY.TO) will report on Friday.
Tech stocks added 3% with Blackberry-maker Research in Motion (RIM.TO) jumping 5%.
Energy stocks climbed 1.9% as crude oil has turned higher on the NYMEX. Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO) added 3.3%, Suncor (SU.TO) climbed 2.7%, Baytex (BTE.UN.TO) added 2.5% and Encana (ECA.TO) gained 1.5%.
Light sweet crude oil for July delivery rose to $62.37, up 70 cents on the session. Oil touched as high as $62.50 in intraday trading.
In other corporate news, Denison Mines Corp. (DML.TO) fell 11.7% after the company announced that it has entered into an agreement with a syndicate of investment dealers which have agreed to purchase, on a bought deal basis, 40 million common shares of Denison at a purchase price of C$2.05 per common share, for aggregate gross proceeds in the amount of C$82.0 million.
Linear Gold Corp. (LRR.TO) surged 19% after the company announced that it has signed a deal with GLR Resources to acquire a 100% interest in the Goldfields Project located near Uranium City, Saskatchewan. Linear will pay GLR US$5.0 million in cash and issue 727,273 Linear Gold Corp. shares with a deemed value of C$800,000.
Canadian Auto Workers members voted in favor of a new cost-cutting deal with General Motors Corp. (GM) a key condition for the automaker to receive billions in government loans from Canada and Ontario. GM still faces a June 1 deadline from President Obama to restructure outside of court or file for bankruptcy protection.
On the economic front, Statistics Canada reported employment insurance claims rose 10.6% to 65,300 in March. While the number of people receiving benefits climbed in March, the number of initial and renewal claims received during that month edged down 1.9%.
In the afternoon, Canadian finance minister Jim Flaherty said the annual budget will exceed a record $50 billion, according to reports.
Across the border, a Conference Board report showed that the consumer confidence index rose to 54.9 in May from an upwardly revised 40.8 in April. Economists had expected the index to edge up to 42.6 from the 39.2 originally reported for the previous month.
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