TSX posts 5.5-month high as investors applaud Fed rate outlook


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TORONTO — Canada’s main stock index hit its highest closing level in more than five months on Thursday, led by gains in the technology and materials sectors as optimism grew that the Reserve federal government would slow the pace of interest rate hikes.

The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX Composite Index ended up 61.81 points, or 0.3%, at 20,344.07, its highest closing level since June 9.

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With U.S. markets closed for Thanksgiving, the focus remained on Wednesday’s release of minutes from the Federal Open Market Committee meeting earlier this month, indicating a slowing pace of rate increases from of December.

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“Investors continue to react bullishly to yesterday’s FOMC minutes,” Colin Cieszynski, chief market strategist at SIA Wealth Management, said in a note.

The Toronto market’s technology sector rose 0.7% as lower bond yields boosted investors’ value of future cash flows that high-growth companies are expected to generate.

The materials group, which includes precious and base metal miners and fertilizer companies, added 0.8%, while the heavily weighted financials ended up 0.2%.

The sector was helped by a 0.7% gain for Manulife Financial Corp after the company announced it would outsource its real estate operations to Canada to focus on its entrepreneurial investment management unit.

Corus Entertainment Inc was an outstanding performer on Thursday, as its shares gained 5.7%. (Reporting by Fergal Smith; Additional reporting by Johann M Cherian in Bengaluru, Editing by Deepa Babington)

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