Canadian stocks rose as crude advanced after U.S. reports showed housing starts climbed more than anticipated in December and initial jobless claims dropped to a five-year low.
Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. (CNQ) gained 0.9 percent as oil touched a four-month high. Ivanplats Ltd. climbed 1.7 percent after more than doubling resource estimates at its Kamoa copper mine. H&R Real Estate Investment Trust (HR-U) slumped 3.6 percent as it offered to acquire Primaris Retail Real Estate Investment Trust, trumping a hostile offer from another investor group.
The Standard & Poor’s/TSX Composite Index (SPTSX) rose 22.27 points, or 0.2 percent, to 12,631.09 at 10:04 a.m. in Toronto. The benchmark gauge has gained 1.5 percent this year.
U.S. Commerce Department figures showed housing starts rose 12.1 percent in December to a 954,000 annual rate, exceeding all forecasts in a Bloomberg survey and the most since June 2008. Initial jobless claims fell 37,000 to 335,000 last week, the lowest since January 2008, Labor Department figures showed.
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