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TORONTO - The Toronto stock market advanced Monday, pushed by gains in the metals and mining sector amid positive news from Asia's two largest economies.
Overnight, Chinese stocks rose after data showed that the country's exports accelerated while inflation edged lower last month, raising hopes that China is on the path to recovery from a recent slowdown.
Japanese shares also rallied thanks to a successful bid by Tokyo for the 2020 Olympic games.
On Wall Street, U.S. markets were positive as the Dow Jones industrials jumped 140.62 points to 15,063.12, the first close above 15,000 for the index since Aug. 23. The Nasdaq was up 46.17 points to 3,706.18 and the S
Canadian market strategist Craig Fehr said the Chinese data showed that there may not only be stabilization in the world's second-largest economy, but also signs of a pickup.
"The market became so accustomed to very strong growth and very strong data out of China for the past decade that when China then entered into a slowdown phase in the last year or two, there was a sort of reconditioning period from investors on what to expect from China," said Fehr, of Edward Jones in St. Louis, Mo.
"Now that we're getting a little more positive data out of China, investors are seeing that there is some more stabilization in that economy and maybe even some acceleration."
Strong growth in China, which is a major buyer of commodities, would help lift the Canadian economy as well as boost U.S. and European markets, he added.
Meanwhile, the Toronto stock market got a boost from BlackBerry (TSX:BB) after its stock jumped more than six per cent following an unconfirmed report that Canadian investor Prem Watsa was close to buying the troubled smartphone maker. Its shares were up 67 cents to $11.96.
In corporate news, Ares Management and the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board confirmed that they plan to buy luxury retailer Neiman Marcus Group for US$6 billion.
Shares in Gabriel Resources Ltd. (TSX:GBU) plummeted more than 50 per cent, or 79 cents, after disclosing it has put in an urgent request for the Romanian government to clarify whether it plans to block debate on draft legislation affecting its Rosia Montana gold project. The company has struggled for several years to overcome opposition to the project, which opponents say poses too much of an environmental risk because it uses cyanide in the extraction process. Its shares closed down 79 cents at 68 cents.
Meanwhile, uranium producer Cameco Corp. (TSX:CCO) says it'll miss the 2013 production target for its Cigar Lake mining project in Saskatchewan due to delays in starting up ore production and mill processing. The major new mine has been delayed several times in past years due to flooding and other technical issues. Shares in Cameco fell 14 cents, or 0.68 per cent, to $20.39.
Most indexes on the TSX were positive, with metals and mining leading the charge with an increase of 2.6 per cent. Shares in Teck Resources (TSX:TCK.B) rose 4.17 per cent or $1.16 to $29. The gold index was the main decliner, down 1.23 per cent. Shares in Iamgold Corp. (TSX:IMG) were off 10 cents, or 1.61 per cent, to $6.10.
On the commodities front, December bullion climbed 20 cents to US$1,386.70 an ounce and copper was up two cents to $3.28 a pound, helped by the Chinese data. The October crude contract on the New York Mercantile Exchange fell $1.01 to US$109.52 a barrel.
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