Canada's main stock market in Toronto continued to rise Wednesday as upward crude oil prices supported resources sectors, while financial stocks also got a boost after the US Federal Reserve kept interest rates unchanged.
The Toronto Stock Exchange's benchmark Standard & Poor's/TSX Composite Index gained 78.22 points, or 0.57 percent, to close at 13,887.66 points. Six of the TSX index's eight main sub-sectors were higher.
Oil prices jumped Wednesday as the Federal Reserve announced that it will maintain the target range for the federal funds rate at 0.25-0.5 percent, but gave little clue on the timing of its next rate hike.
The West Texas Intermediate for June delivery surged 1.29 US dollars to settle at 50.15 dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, while Brent crude for June delivery increased 1.44 dollars to close at 47.18 dollars a barrel on the London ICE Futures Exchange.
On TSX company news, outgoing Valeant Pharmaceuticals Chief Executive Michael Pearson plans to tell a U.S. Senate panel on Wednesday that he regrets his decision to acquire and jack up the price of two life-saving heart drugs. Valeant shares weakened 3.46 percent to 44.12 Canadian dollars (34.97 U.S. dollars).
Bombardier Inc. said on Tuesday it will be moving forward its first-quarter results by a day to Thursday, in a surprise announcement that only served to elevate market expectations of a big CSeries order this week. Bombardier shares got lift of 1.01 percent to 2.01 Canadian dollars.
Cenovus Energy Inc. reported a smaller quarterly loss, helped by foreign exchange gains, and said it would cut its 2016 capital budget to help cope with a prolonged slump in oil prices. Cenovus shares popped 31 cents, or 1.64 percent, to 19.18 Canadian dollars.
NBF raised the rating on Teck Resources to sector perform from underperform. Teck shares added 56 cents, or 4.09 percent, to 14.25 Canadian dollars.
Barclays cut the target price on Husky Energy to 21.00 Canadian dollars from 22.00 Canadian dollars, with an overweight rating. Husky shares boosted 0.19 percent to 15.90 Canadian dollars.
CIBC raised the target price on Sun Life Financial to 47.00 Canadian dollars from 44.00 Canadian dollars. Sun Life shares gained 24 cents to 43.40 Canadian dollars.
The TSX information technology sector was rattled 1.38 percent after U.S. tech giant Apple reported the first year-over-year slump of both quarterly revenue and profit since 2003 and the first ever drop in iPhone sales.
Meanwhile, Canada's national housing agency said nine of Canada's 15 largest housing markets are showing signs of being overvalued.
The Canadian dollar traded slightly higher at 0.7925 U.S. dollar, compared with Tuesday's closing rate of 0.7923 U.S. dollar.