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TSX Hits New All-time High As Energy, Materials Shares Rally

Canadian stocks were modestly higher Friday morning amid renewed optimism about U.S.-China trade negotiations after White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said the two countries are in contact every single day and are "getting close" to a phase one trade deal.

Strong gains energy stocks thanks to higher crude oil prices drove the market up. Several stocks from the materials space too moved up. Consumer staples and information technology stocks also found support.

The benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index, which hit a new all-time high of 17,025.96 this morning, was up 50.84 points, or 0.3%, at 17,023.02 a few minutes before noon.

Among energy shares, Crescent Point Energy (CPG.TO) gained 3%. The company announced it is selling Saskatchewan midstream assets for $500 million as part of a divestiture strategy adopted following a management shakeup last year.

MEG Energy (MEG.TO) and Tourmaline Oil Corp (TOU.TO) were up 4.7% and 4.5%, respectively. Imperial Oil (IMO.TO), Cenovus Energy (CVE.TO), Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO), Vermilion Energy (VET.TO), Enerplus Corp (ERF.TO) and ARC Resources (ARX.TO) gained 1.5 to 3%.

Detour Gold Corporation (DGC.TO) soared nearly 15% after the company reported adjusted net earnings of $35.3 million ($0.20 per basic share) for the third quarter of fiscal 2019, compared to adjusted net loss of $1.5 million ($0.01 per basic share) in the year-ago quarter.

First Quantum Minerals (FM.TO) and Lundin Mining Corporation (LUN.TO) gained 4.1% and 3.5%, respectively.

Wheaton Precious Metals (WPM.TO) gained about 2.3%. The company reported adjusted net earnings of $72,692, or $0.16 per share, for the third quarter ended September 2019, compared with adjusted net earnings of $35,132, or $0.08 per share in the year-ago quarter.

The Green Organic Dutchman Holdings Ltd. (TGOD.TO) reported a net loss of $20.1 million for the third quarter of 2019. Out of this, $4.3 million was related to non-cash stock-based compensation, depreciation and amortization, the company said. The stock tumbled 10%.

Aurora Cannabis Inc. (ACB.TO) shares declined nearly 7% after the company reported net cannabis revenue of $70.8 million for the first quarter of fiscal 2020, compared to $94.6 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2019.

In economic news, data released by Statistics Canada said foreign investors acquired $4.8 billion of Canadian securities in September, while Canadian investors reduced their holdings of foreign securities by $2.4 billion.

A report from the Canadian Real Estate Association declared home selling activity was up 12.9% year-over-year. The number of newly listed properties declined by 1.8% month-on-month. The MLS Home Price Index advanced by 0.6% month-on-month and 1.8% year-on-year.

On the U.S.-China trade front, White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said Thursday that U.S. and Chinese negotiators are in contact every single day and are "getting close" to a phase one trade deal.

"It's not done yet, but there has been very good progress and the talks have been very constructive," Kudlow said at an event at the Council on Foreign Relations.

Meanwhile, in an appearance on the Fox Business Network on Friday, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said the talks are "down to the last details" and a deal will be completed "in all likelihood."

Adding to the positive sentiment, China has lifted a nearly five-year ban on imports of U.S. poultry in a goodwill gesture that could lead to more than $1 billion in annual shipments to China.

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