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April 12, 2012, 2:17 p.m. EDT

Canadian stocks rally along with commodity prices

By Warangkana Chomchuen

NEW YORK (MarketWatch) — Canadian stocks rallied on Thursday, as rising commodity prices boosted the energy and mining sectors.

The S&P/TSX Composite Index  gained 142 points to 12,167.

Stocks on Wall Street also rallied, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DOW:DJIA)  up more than 160 points. Read Market Snapshot.

New York Fed President William Dudley said on Thursday that the U.S. economy is not yet strong enough to make a big dent in the jobless rate.

Dudley seemed to indicate willingness to accommodate the idea of further Fed intervention, said Danielle Park, president and portfolio manager at Ontario-based Venable Park Investment Counsel Inc.

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Markets shrug off jobs data

U.S. stocks opened higher as investors shrugged off muted jobs data and focused on decent demand for an Italian bond auction and dovish remarks from the New York Fed's president. Jonathan Cheng reports on Markets Hub. Photo: AP

Higher metals prices boosted stocks in the mining sector.

Gold for June delivery rallied 1% on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Barrick Gold Corp. (TSE:CA:ABX)   shares climbed 2%.

Shares of Eldorado Gold Corp. (TSE:CA:ELD)  rallied 8.2% after the company said it plans to invest almost $2 billion in development over the next five years to reach its gold production target of 1.7 million ounces annually by 2016, representing a 160% growth.

Copper prices also advanced. Shares of First Quantum Minerals Ltd. (TSE:CA:FM)  rallied 6.7% and Teck Resources Ltd.  climbed 3%.

Capstone Mining Corp. (TSE:CA:CS)  shares jumped 10%. The company reported first-quarter production of 18.6 million pounds of copper in concentrates. The company said its Cozamin mine produced a record amount of copper for the second straight quarter.

The S&P/TSX Capped Energy Index (TORONTO:XX:TORGC187) rose 1.5%, as crude-oil futures gained ahead of talks over Iran’s nuclear program this weekend. Shares of Suncor Energy Inc. (TSE:CA:SU)   (NYS:SU)  gained 2%, while Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. (TSE:CA:CNQ)   (NYS:CNQ)  rose 3.6%.

Canadian stocks rose amid Thursday’s mixed bag of economic data.

The U.S. reported a higher number of claims for jobless benefits, but said its trade deficit has narrowed after exports increased and imports from China declined.

At home, Canada’s trade surplus in February unexpectedly shrank to C$292 million, Statistics Canada said. The number was much lower than the consensus estimate of about C$2 billion.

In earnings, Cogeco Cable Inc. (TSE:CA:CCA)  shares slipped 2.7% after the company reported a decline in second-quarter profit from continuing operations. The cable distributor’s revenue increased 8% but missed analysts’ estimates.

Fibrek Inc.  shares sank 7% after Resolute Forest Products  — formerly known as AbitibiBowater Inc. — said it has acquired 46.8% ownership of the pulp producer by the offer’s deadline late Wednesday through a hostile takeover bid.

Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc.  shares edged up 1.4% after the company said it bought U.S.-based Pedinol Pharmacal Inc. for about $27 million.

In currency trading, the Canadian dollar strengthened against its U.S. counterpart (XTUP:USDCAD) , with one U.S. dollar buying C$0.9948 from C$1.0027 late Wednesday.

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