Canadian stocks rose, trimming the benchmark index’s first monthly decline since June, as Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc. rallied after boosting its bid for Allergan Inc.
Valeant reversed earlier declines to jump 1.7 percent after increasing the cash portion of its offer for the maker of Botox. Cott Corp. rose 3.5 percent after the beverage company’s U.K. unit bought Aimia Foods Ltd. Midway Gold Corp. fell 9.1 percent after saying it would sell $25 million in new shares.
The Standard & Poor’s/TSX Composite Index gained 15.21 points, or 0.1 percent, to 14,604.16 at 4 p.m. in Toronto, trimming its decline this week to 0.7 percent. The equities benchmark fell 0.4 percent in May, ending the longest streak of gains since 1983.
“Perhaps the rally’s a little bit expended here so its time to move some capital,” said Brian Huen, managing partner at Red Sky Capital Management Ltd in Toronto. “If you look at the sentiment as well as the action in the market, there’s certainly an air of cautiousness.” Huen said. He helps manage about C$350 million ($320 million).
Equities were lower until the Valeant bid, as a report showed Canada’s gross domestic product grew at a 1.2 percent annualized rate in the first quarter, compared with 2.7 percent in the previous three months. Economists surveyed by Bloomberg forecast growth of 1.8 percent.
Severe weather that struck North America this winter added another hurdle for exporters and businesses that the Bank of Canada said will need to take over as drivers of growth in order to eliminate spare economic capacity. The central bank has held its benchmark rate at 1 percent since 2010 as Canada has struggled to emerge from the global recession with much speed.
Five of the 10 main groups in the S&P/TSX rose today, with health-care shares jumping 1.4 percent to pace gains.
Valeant rose 1.7 percent to C$142.34 after raising its unsolicited offer to $72 cash and 0.83 of a Valeant share for each Allergan share. The previous offer was for $58.30 in cash and the same amount of stock.
Cott gained 3.5 percent to C$7.64. The maker of Stars & Stripes Cola said the Aimia purchase will be funded with cash on hand and an existing lending facility.
Midway Gold fell 9.1 percent to 90 Canadian cents after saying it would sell 30 million shares for 83 cents each.
Kingsway Financial Services Inc. gained 2.5 percent to C$7.02 after it said it had regained full compliance with the New York Stock Exchange’s listing standards.
Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce lost 2.1 percent to C$95.66 after Macquarie Capital Markets cut its rating on the bank’s stock to the equivalent of a sell from the equivalent of a hold.
Element Financial Corp. rose 1.6 percent to C$13.65 after Reuters reported it was close to buying PHH Corp.’s vehicle fleet leasing unit for $1.35 billion.
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