Canadian stocks rose for a fifth day after commodity producers rallied on the U.S. dollar’s slide and sales of new homes and orders for durable goods excluding vehicles rose in the U.S., the country’s biggest trade partner.
Goldcorp Inc., Canada’s second-biggest gold producer, gained 1.3 percent as the metal climbed the most in two weeks. Suncor Energy Inc., the country’s largest oil and gas company, increased 2 percent as the U.S. government reported the biggest increase in home sales since April 1963. Sears Canada Inc., which owns Sears department stores in Canada, fell 1.8 percent after Sears Holdings Corp. agreed to raise its stake to 90.4 percent.
The Standard & Poor’s/TSX Composite Index rose 78.77 points, or 0.7 percent, to an 18-month high of 12,239.64. The index last climbed five times in a week in July.
“That housing sales number today was shocking,” said Barry Schwartz, a portfolio manager at Baskin Financial Services Inc. in Toronto, which manages about C$340 million ($339 million). “If the consumer is getting better, the housing market is healing, that means the U.S. will grow and take us along for the ride.”
The S&P/TSX rallied 1.4 percent this week as companies including EnCana Corp., American Express Co., Boeing Co. and Apple Inc. have reported profit above the average analyst estimate. In the earnings season that began last week, 85 percent of S&P 500 companies and five of eight S&P/TSX companies have beaten analyst forecasts.
Gold Stocks Gain
Gold stocks gained as the U.S. dollar fell for the first time in seven days against a basket of world currencies. Greece asked for help from the European Union and International Monetary Fund to address its budget deficit, the widest among countries that use the euro currency.
Goldcorp advanced 1.3 percent to C$40.38. Barrick Gold Corp., its larger rival, increased 0.6 percent to C$40.41. European Goldfields Ltd., which mines in Greece, led the S&P/TSX with a 7.4 percent jump to C$7.51.
New Gold Inc., which produces in Australia, Mexico and the U.S., rallied for a second day after announcing a 44 percent sales increase, gaining 6.2 percent to C$5.70. In a note dated yesterday, Bank of Montreal analyst Andrew Kaip raised his price estimate on the company to C$6.75 from C$5.80.
The U.S. Commerce Department said orders for durable goods except vehicles jumped 2.8 percent in March, four times as much as the median forecast of 44 analysts in a Bloomberg survey. Home sales climbed 27 percent, more than any of 77 surveyed economists estimated.
Suncor rose 2 percent to C$34.53 as oil rallied 1.7 percent to $85.12 a barrel. Imperial Oil Ltd., Canada’s second-largest energy company, gained 1.9 percent to a five-month high of C$43.03. Enbridge Inc., the country’s biggest pipeline company, advanced 1.8 percent to C$50.55.
Sears Canada, the second-largest Canadian retailer of general merchandise, fell 1.8 percent to C$29 after U.S. sister company Sears Holdings Corp. agreed to buy Pershing Square Capital Management LP’s 17 percent stake for C$30 a share. Sears Holdings can now acquire the rest of the Canadian unit without a vote of shareholders.
Cline Mining Corp., which is developing coal, gold and iron projects, soared 24 percent to C$2.52 after receiving U.S. government approval to rehabilitate a coal mine on Colorado. Cline Mining shares have jumped more than fourfold since the beginning of March.
CGI Group Inc., Canada’s largest computer-services provider, dropped 1.6 percent to C$15.26. Analyst Steven Li of Raymond James Financial Inc. cut his rating on the stock to “market perform” from “outperform,” citing CGI’s rally to within 3.1 percent of his price estimate as of yesterday.
To contact the reporters on this story: Matt Walcoff in Toronto at firstname.lastname@example.org