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Canadian Markets Ends Higher For 3rd Straight Day

The Canadian stock market ended higher on Wednesday, riding on strong gains in materials and information technology sections.

Hopes for additional stimulus in the U.S. from the new president Joe Biden helped keep sentiment positive. Investors also digested Bank of Canada's rate decision and views on the economy.

The benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index ended with a gain of 57.54 points or 0.32% at 18,014.91, after scaling a low of 17,911.50 and a high of 18,027.52 intraday.

MEG Energy (MEG.TO) climbed nearly 10%. Crescent Point Energy (CPG.TO), BlackBerry (BB.TO), Whitecap Resources (WCP.TO) and Kinross Gold Corporation (K.TO) also ended with impressive gains on strong volumes.

Pan American Silver Corp (PAAS.TO) gained more than 7%. Magna International (MG.TO), Agnico Eagle Mines (AEM.TO), Colliers International (CIGI.TO), Kinaxis Inc. (KXS.TO), Franco-Nevada Corporation (FNV.TO), Shopify Inc. (SHOP.TO) and Constellation Software (CSU.TO) gained 1 to 4%.

West Fraser Timber Co. Ltd. (WFT.TO) and Norbord Inc. (OSB.TO) have jointly announced that the shareholders of each of West Fraser and Norbord have approved all resolutions relating to West Fraser's acquisition of all of the issued and outstanding common shares of Norbord. West Fraser Timber and Norbord shares gained about 3% and 3.7%, respectively.

The Bank of Canada today held its target for the overnight rate at the effective lower bound of 0.25%, with the Bank Rate at 0.5% and the deposit rate at 0.25%,The central bank, which has also decided to keep its bond-buying program unchanged at $4 billion a week, reiterated its pledge to keep policy rates at current levels "until the recovery is well underway."

Data released by Statistics Canada showed consumer prices rose in December 2020. The data said Canada's consumer Price Index rose 0.7% on a year-over-year basis in December, down from a 1.0% increase in November. On a seasonally-adjusted monthly basis, the CPI rose 0.1% in December.

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