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Commodities Lift TSX Wednesday Morning - Canadian Commentary

Toronto stocks moved up Wednesday morning amid a batch of encouraging corporate earnings reports from the U.S., Canada's largest trading partner. Also, traders await the Federal Open Market Committee's post-meeting policy statement, updated forecasts from the central bank and Chairman Ben Bernanke's press briefing and overlooked data showing that UK's economy slipped back into the recession in first quarter

The S&P/TSX Composite Index moved up 59.62 points or 0.50 percent to 12,039.72, after losing nearly 175 points or 1.50 percent in the past three straight sessions.

The Diversified Materials Index rose close to 2 percent, with Inmet Mining (IMN.TO) and First Quantum Minerals (FM.TO) gaining close to 3 percent each. Teck Resources (TCK_B.TO) added 2 percent.

Today's data from the EIA revealed that US crude oil inventories jumped by 4.00 million barrels, while gasoline stocks dipped 2.20 million barrels in the weekended April 20. Analysts were expecting crude oil inventories to add 1.50 million barrels, while gasoline stocks are seen dipping by 500,000 barrels last week. Crude for June was down $0.25 to $103.30 a barrel.

In the oil patch, Niko Resources (NKO.TO) gathered nearly 7 percent. Tourmaline Oil (TOU.TO) rose nearly 4 percent, while Bonterra Energy (BNE.TO) was adding over 1 percent.

Natural gas firm Encana Corp. (ECA.TO) moved up 2 percent after posting first-quarter net earnings of $12 million or $0.02 per share, as against a loss of $361 million last year. Operating earnings were $240 million or $0.33 per share up from $218 million or $0.30 per share in the prior-year quarter.

IT and business processing services provider CGI Group Inc. (GIB_A.TO) gained close to 2 percent despite reporting d a lower second quarter net earnings of C$105.7 million or C$0.40 per share compared to C$118.7 million or C$0.43 per share in the same quarter last year. Analysts were expecting the company to report earnings of C$0.41 per share for the quarter.

The price of gold was ticking lower Wednesday morning even as the US dollar eased ahead of Federal Open Market Committee's post-meeting policy statement. Gold for June edged down $5.90 to $1,637.90 an ounce.

Gold and silver ore mining company Aberdeen International (AAB.TO) surged over 6 percent after it said it would sell 1 percent net smelter return royalty on gold produced from certain mineral concessions to Premier Royalty Corporation, which is wholly-owned by Premier Gold Mines Limited (PG.TO), for $20.90 million.

Meanwhile, communications and media company Rogers Communications (RCI_B.TO) lost over 4 percent after reporting d a lower first-quarter net income of C$305 million or C$0.57 per share compared to C$335 million or C$0.60 per share in the same quarter last year. Adjusted earnings per share declined to C$0.67 from C$0.76 last year. Analysts were expecting the company to report earnings of C$0.76 per share for the quarter.

In economic news from south of the border, according to the U.S. Commerce Department advance estimates of new durable goods orders for the month came in at $202.6 billion, a 4.2 percent decrease from February levels, marking the largest monthly decline since January 2009. Most economists had predicted durable goods orders to fall from February levels but the market generally expected a much less severe drop of around 1.5 percent.

From the euro zone, the U.K. economy unexpectedly contracted for the second straight time in the first quarter, the Office for National Statistics showed today. Gross domestic product dropped 0.2 percent sequentially, while economists were forecasting a 0.1 percent expansion. That follows a 0.3 percent drop in the fourth quarter of 2011.

by RTTNews Staff Writer

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