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Canada Stocks Rise to 2-Year High as Metals Gain on U.S. Data

Dec. 24 (Bloomberg) -- Canadian stocks rose, sending the benchmark gauge to the highest level since June 2011, as commodities prices advanced after orders for U.S. durable goods climbed more than forecast in November.

Centerra Gold Corp. added 4.8 percent after it agreed to a non-binding deal with the Kyrgyz government over ownership of the Kumtor gold mining project. Sherritt International Corp. surged 15 percent after selling its its coal interests for C$946 million ($891 million). Alacer Gold Corp. and Detour Gold Corp. rose at least 7.8 percent as the price of the metal advanced.

The Standard & Poor’s/TSX Composite Index rose 69.89 points, or 0.5 percent, to 13,517.59 at 1 p.m. in Toronto, for a fifth day of gains, the longest streak since October. The benchmark equity gauge has risen 8.7 percent this year, the fourth-worst performer among developed markets ahead of Austria, Hong Kong and Singapore. Trading volume was 37 percent lower compared with the 30-day average. The market closed at 1 p.m. today before the Christmas holiday.

“Businesses may be starting to spend more freely,” said Peter Buchanan, economist at CIBC World Markets Inc. in a note to clients. “Combined with the signs of consumer resilience from yesterday’s spending numbers, that could bode well for the economy’s performance in 2014.”

Bookings for goods meant to last at least three years rose 3.5 percent after a 0.7 percent drop the prior month, a Commerce Department report showed today in Washington. The median estimate of 75 economists surveyed by Bloomberg called for a 2 percent advance. Data yesterday showed consumer spending rose in November by the most in five months.

Gold Rally

Raw-materials stocks climbed 2.4 percent as a group, the most in the S&P/TSX, as nine of 10 industries advanced.

Centerra Gold jumped 4.8 percent to C$4.16 after agreeing to a deal in which the government of the Kyrgyz Republic and Kyrgyzaltyn JSC will exchange a 33 percent equity interest in Centerra for a 50 percent stake in the Kumtor project. Centerra will remain operator and manager of the project.

Alacer Gold increased 7.8 percent to C$2.20 and Detour Gold rallied 9.7 percent to C$3.96 as gold gained for the second time in three sessions on speculation this month’s price drop may spur more physical buying. Prices have slumped 29 percent this year through yesterday.

Detour Gold has tumbled 84 percent in 2013, the worst-performing stock in the benchmark Canadian equity gauge.

Sherritt International soared 15 percent to C$3.88, the biggest gain since 2009. the Canadian energy and mining company has agreed to sell assets including all of its coal interests for C$946 million ($891 million).

A group led by Altius Minerals Corp. will buy Sherritt’s coal-development assets and mining-royalty interests while Westmoreland Coal Co. will acquire Sherritt’s operating coal mines. Altius rallied 13 percent to C$11.93.

BlackBerry Ltd. rose 3 percent to C$8.22 for a fourth day of gains since disclosing a five-year deal to outsource smartphone production to Foxconn Group. The stock is at its highest level since October.

To contact the reporter on this story: Eric Lam in Toronto at elam87@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Lynn Thomasson at lthomasson@bloomberg.net

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