Canada Stocks Rise a 2nd Day as Couche-Tard, Insurers Advance

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Canadian stocks rose a second day, extending the biggest increase in five weeks, as Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. surged to lead gains among consumer shares and the nation’s largest insurers advanced ahead of earnings.

Couche-Tard climbed 4.6 percent to snap a three-day slide. Sun Life Financial Inc. and Manulife Financial Corp. added at least 1.3 percent. First Quantum Minerals Ltd. slipped 3.5 percent as copper fell after the largest weekly advance in 40 months.

The Standard & Poor’s/TSX Composite Index rose 27.70 points, or 0.2 percent, to 15,367.47 at 4 p.m. in Toronto. The benchmark Canadian equity gauge has advanced 5 percent so far this year.

Five of 10 industries in the S&P/TSX rose today on trading volume 18 percent lower than the 30-day average. Financial shares climbed 0.4 percent, while consumer staples stocks jumped 1.9 percent.

Couche-Tard rallied 4.6 percent, the most since December. The Laval, Quebec-based operator of convenience stores and gas stations said in a release an April 24 bankruptcy filing before an Arizona court for The Circle K Corp. was not related to Couche-Tard’s Circle K subsidiary and has no link to the company.

Sun Life Financial gained 1.6 percent, the biggest increase in seven weeks. The insurer will report first-quarter earnings May 5. Manulife, the nation’s largest insurer, is scheduled to report on May 7.

Torex Gold Resources Inc. jumped 5.5 percent and Centerra Gold Inc. added 4.6 percent. Gold futures for June delivery climbed 1 percent to settle at $1,186.80 an ounce in New York, rebounding from a six-week low.

Ensign Energy Services Inc. added 11 percent, the most since 2009, after reporting first-quarter profit ahead of analysts’ estimates.