Canadian stocks rose for the first time in three days, led by banks, as the U.S. reported a ninth- straight monthly increase in retail sales.
Royal Bank of Canada, Canada’s largest lender by assets, advanced 1 percent after U.S. retail sales excluding automobiles and service stations rose more than most economists had forecast. Teck Resources Ltd. (TCK/B) fell 1.9 percent as copper dropped the most since March 9. BlackBerry maker Research In Motion Ltd. (RIM) climbed 2.3 percent after DigiTimes said the company “has placed large-volume orders” for its PlayBook tablet computer from manufacturers.
The Standard & Poor’s/TSX Composite Index gained 32.24 points, or 0.2 percent, from a three-week low to 13,833.64.
The retail sales report “shows there is some form of recovery down south of us,” Arthur Salzer, who helps oversee C$300 million ($312 million) as a money manager at MacNicol & Associates Asset Management Inc. in Toronto.
The stock benchmark tumbled 2.9 percent April 11 and yesterday for the biggest two-day drop since June. Oil declined 5.8 percent and copper lost 2.6 percent as the International Monetary Fund cut its growth forecast for the U.S. and Japan raised the severity rating of its nuclear crisis to the highest level.
“With the oil price coming down a little bit, people are being more optimistic it’s not going to have a negative impact on the economy,” said Jennifer Radman, who helps oversee C$1 billion as a money manager at Caldwell Investment Management Ltd. in Toronto. “When we get oil prices above a certain level, in the $110 mark, you really start to see an economic drag.”
The S&P/TSX Financials Index rose the most in two weeks after the U.S. Commerce Department released the retail-sales data.
Royal Bank gained 1 percent to C$60.42. Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, Canada’s fifth-largest lender by assets, advanced 0.7 percent to C$83.87, ending a six-day streak of losses. Mutual-fund company IGM Financial Inc. (IGM) increased 1.7 percent to C$48.50.
RIM climbed 2.3 percent from a five-month low to C$52.79 after DigiTimes said Quanta Computer Inc. may ship more than 1 million PlayBook tablets a month in the third quarter. The Taipei-based business-news website cited unnamed sources from component makers.
Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan Inc., the world’s largest fertilizer producer by market value, rose for the first time in seven days, climbing 0.9 percent to C$54.47. Wheat rebounded from yesterday’s 4.9 percent plunge on speculation dry weather will reduce yields in the U.S.
All major base metals traded on the London Metal Exchange retreated on concern China, the world’s biggest user of the raw materials, will take more steps to tighten credit and fight inflation.
Teck fell for a sixth day, losing 1.9 percent to C$50.90. First Quantum Minerals Ltd. (FM), Canada’s second-largest publicly traded copper producer, decreased 2.9 percent to C$121.30 to extend its weekly drop to 11 percent. European Goldfields Ltd., which mines zinc, lead and silver, sank 6.7 percent to C$10.55, the lowest price since September.
Most S&P/TSX energy companies gained as natural gas advanced 1.1 percent and crude oil 0.8 percent.
Enbridge Inc. (ENB), Canada’s largest pipeline company, increased 1 percent to C$60.05. Cenovus Energy Inc. (CVE), Canada’s fifth- biggest energy company, climbed 0.6 percent to C$36.34. Oil- sands developer BlackPearl Resources Inc. (PXX) surged 6.1 percent to C$7.81.
First Majestic Silver Corp. (FR), which mines in Mexico, soared 12 percent to C$22.14 as the metal rebounded from a 1.3 percent decline yesterday. Shares of the Vancouver-based company had plunged 16 percent in the previous two days.
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