Canadian stocks rose a fifth day to a two-year high, as gold producers advanced in anticipation of rising demand in China and BlackBerry Ltd. led gains among technology stocks.
Barrick Gold Corp. rose 4.6 percent and Detour Gold Corp. rallied 7 percent as the price of gold traded near a five-week high in London. Pan American Silver Corp. climbed 3 percent to C$14.60. Osisko Mining Corp. ended flat after the company’s board recommended shareholders reject Goldcorp Inc.’s C$2.6 billion ($2.4 billion) unsolicited bid.
Blackberry rose 8.2 percent to close at C$10.80 in Toronto after rising as much as 18 percent earlier today on news the company’s smartphones would account for 98 percent of devices hooked up to a new U.S. Department of Defense network.
The Standard & Poor’s/TSX Composite Index rose 102.08 points, or 0.7 percent, to 13,990.29 at the close in Toronto, the highest since April 2011. The benchmark equity gauge has risen 2.7 percent this year. U.S. markets were closed today for the Martin Luther King Jr. Day holiday.
“When the U.S. market is closed, Canada can go either way, and today is an up day, continuing the firmness we had last week,” said Irwin Michael, fund manager at ABC Funds in Toronto. His firm manages about C$850 million. “There’s a dose of optimism out there. People who were queasy about gold took their losses in November and December and it’s a fresh year now.”
China, which probably overtook India as the largest user of gold last year, celebrates the Lunar New Year on Jan. 31, when consumers traditionally increase gold purchases.
Chinese gross domestic product expanded 7.7 percent in the fourth quarter, compared with 7.8 percent in the previous three months, the National Bureau of Statistics said today. Industrial production rose 9.7 percent in December, short of a 9.8 percent median forecast of analysts and a 10 percent gain in November, the data show.
Raw-materials stocks gained 1.6 percent as a group and all 10 industries in the S&P/TSX advanced.
Barrick Gold rose 4.6 percent to C$21.56 and Detour Gold rallied 7 percent to C$6.61 as the S&P/TSX Gold Index increased 2.3 percent to its highest level since Oct. 30. The gauge has advanced for four days, the longest such streak since August.
Gold for immediate delivery reached as high as $1,265.34 an ounce in London, the highest since Dec. 10.
Cameco Corp., a uranium producer, rose 3.6 percent to C$24.97, the highest close in almost two years.
Greg Barnes, an analyst at TD Securities Inc., raised his rating for Cameco to a buy from a hold and increased his price target to C$31 from C$22.
“After three years in the wilderness, we believe that it is time to think about a positive turn in fundamentals for uranium and for Cameco,” Barnes said in the report to clients yesterday.
The stock has 14 buys, five holds and one sell, with a 12-month average price target of C$25.89, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
Pan American Silver rose 3 percent to C$14.60 for a seventh straight daily advance, the longest since September 2012.
Osisko Mining closed unchanged at C$6.47. The company rejected Goldcorp’s offer as too low, and said it’s reviewing other options. Osisko said the bid undervalues its Canadian Malartic mine in Quebec.
Goldcorp on Jan. 13 made a cash-and-stock offer for Osisko including 0.146 Goldcorp shares and C$2.26 in cash per share.