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TSX Extends Recent Gains, Ends On Firm Note

Despite a fall from higher levels early on in the session and a sluggish ride till noon, the Canadian stock market ended on a firm note on Tuesday, led by gains in healthcare, energy and consumer discretionary shares.

Although the market opened on a positive note, tracking gains on Wall Street, the mood was quite cautious with investors looking ahead to some major U.S. events this week. Ahead of the outcome of the U.S. midterm elections, investors appeared a bit wary of making significant moves.

The results of the midterm elections will decide control of both the House and Senate and could have a major impact on President Donald Trump's ability to enact his pro-business agenda.

Investors also looked ahead to the Federal Reserve, which is scheduled to announce its monetary policy decision on Thursday. The central bank is widely expected to leave interest rates unchanged. The accompanying statement is eyed for clues about an expected rate hike in December.

The benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index ended up 75.01 points, or 0.49%, at 15,292.71. The index scaled a low of 15,220.16 and a high of 15,295.31 in the session.

On Monday, the index ended up 98.42 points, or 0.65%, at 15,217.70.

The Capped Healthcare Index gained 3.83%. Bausch Health Companies Inc. (BHC.TO) ended stronger by 5.2% despite reporting net loss of $350 million for the quarter ended September 2018.

Canopy Growth Corporation (WEED.TO) jumped nearly 7%, Aphria Inc. (APH.TO) surged up 4.7% ans Aurora Cannabis Inc. (ACB.TO) gained 1.7%.

Among the stocks in the Energy Index, Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO) ended nearly 2% up, ARC Resources (ARX.TO) added 2.2% and PrairieSky Royalty (PSK.TO) advanced by 1.1%.

In the consumer discretionary space, Great Canadian Gaming Corporation (GC.TO) soared 17.3% on upbeat results. The company announced after trading hours on Monday that it posted net earnings of $52.6 million or $0.86 per common share in the third quarter, an increase of 96% and 95%, respectively, over its earnings in the corresponding quarter of the previous year.

Magna International Inc. (MG.TO) gained 1.3%, Restaurant Brands International Inc. (QSR.TO) climbed up 1.85% and Canada Goose Holdings Inc. (GOOS.TO) gained 2.1%.

Among bank stocks, Bank of Montreal (BMO.TO) gained 0.55%. Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CM.TO) and Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS.TO) ended with modest gains. National Bank of Canada (NA.TO) declined by about 0.6%, while Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO) and Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD.TO) ended flat.

In the materials space, Nutrien (NTR.TO) jumped 4.5%, Franco-Nevada Corporation (FNV.TO) ended nearly 2% up and Methanex Corporation (MX.TO) added 1.3%.

Among the big gainers in the session were, Second Cup Limited (SCU.TO), which rose 13.5%, Stingray Digital Group Inc. (RAY.A.TO) and Cronos Group Inc. (CRON.TO), which gained nearly 11% each.

Thomson Reuters (TRI.TO) reported adjusted EPS of $0.11 for the third quarter of this year, as compared to $0.27 in the year ago quarter. The stock ended 4.6% up.

Wajax Corporation (WJX.T) reported third quarter revenue of $69.5 million, up 23.3% over year-ago quarter. Despite the surge in earnings, the stock ended lower by about 2.3%.

The U.S. market ended higher as stocks continued to recover from the sell-off seen in October. However, traders seemed reluctant to make more significant moves amid uncertainty about the outcome of today's highly anticipated midterm elections.

European markets edged lower on some disappointing eurozone economic data. Asian markets ended mixed.

In commodities, crude oil futures for December ended down $0.89, or 1.4%, at $62.21 a barrel, extending losses to a seventh straight session.

Gold futures for December for December ended down $6.00, or 0.5%, at $1,226.30 an ounce.

Silver futures for December ended down $$0.147, at $14.500 an ounce, while Copper futures settled lower by $0.0235, at $2.7325 per pound.

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