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TSX Ends On Firm Note

The Canadian stock market ended on a firm note on Wednesday, extending gains to a second day, thanks to strong gains in energy, healthcare and materials sections.

Several stocks from financial, industrial and consumer discretionary sectors to posted impressive gains.

Firm U.S. and European markets, and upbeat earnings from some top name U.S. companies lifted sentiment. Coca-Cola, Verizon and Johnson & Johnson reported better than expected quarterly earnings.

The benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index ended with a gain of 167.34 points or 0.84% at 20,110.05, after climbing to a high of 20,144.57.

The Capped Energy Index climbed nearly 2.6% as energy stocks rallied after West Texas Intermediate crude oil futures for September ended up by $3.10 or about 4.6% at $70.30 a barrel.

Vermilion Energy (VET.TO) gained 6.4% and Crescent Point Energy (CPG.TO) gained 4.2%, while MEG Energy (MEG.TO), Whitecap Resources (WCP.TO), Cenovus Energy (CVE.TO), Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO) and Arc Resources (ARX.TO) ended higher by 2.9 to 4%.

PrairieSky Royalty (PSK.TO), Suncor Energy (SU.TO), Parex Resources (PXT.TO) and Enerplus Corp (ERF.TO) also closed sharply higher.

Silvercrest Metals (SIL.TO), up 7.6%, was the top gainer in the Materials Index. Turquoise Hill Resources (TRQ.TO), Capstone Mining Corp (CS.TO), Endeavour Silver Corp (EDR.TO), Lithium Americas Corp (LAC.TO) and New Gold Inc (NGD.TO) gained 5 to 5.5%. Several other stocks, including Teck Resources (TECK.B.TO), Hudbay Minerals (HBM.TO), Canfor Corp (CFP.TO) and Torex Gold Resources (TXG.TO) also closed sharply higher.

Healthcare stocks Tilray Inc (TLRY.TO), Aurora Cannabis (ACB.TO), Aurinia Pharmaceuticals (AUP.TO), Trillium Therapeutics (TRIL.TO), Canopy Growth Corp (WEED.TO), Cronos Group (CRON.TO) and Bausch Health Companies (BHC.TO) gained 1 to 2.3%.

Canadian National Railway Inc. (CNR.TO) shares gained 1.2%. The company reported diluted earnings per share of C$1.46 in the second quarter, an increase of 90% over the year-ago quarter. Adjusted diluted EPS came in at C$1.49, an increase of 16% over the same quarter last year.

In economic news, data from Statistics Canada showed prices of new homes in Canada edged up 0.6% over a month earlier in June, easing from a 1.4% rise in May.

On an annual basis, new house prices jumped 11.9% in June, one of the steepest increases on records, continuing an upward trend that began in December of 2020.

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