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TSX nears six-year high

Canada's main stock market climbed to levels it hasn't touched in nearly six years on Wednesday, pushed higher by a major deal between two Canadian gold companies.

By the afternoon, Toronto's S&P/TSX composite index lifted 30.17 points to 14,410.72, which is around the height it reached in early May 2008. But it's still short of the all-time TSX high of 15,073 set in June 2008.

The Canadian dollar rose 0.04 of a cent to 90.69 cents US.

Much of the motivation came from the TSX gold sector which was spurred by a deal from mining heavyweight Yamana Gold Inc. (TSX:YRI), which wants to acquire a 50 per cent stake in the mining and exploration assets of Osisko Mining Corp. (TSX:OSK).

The offer implies Osisko is worth about $3.4 billion and its shares jumped 5.5 per cent to $7.26, as the heaviest traded stock on the TSX with 32 million shares. Yamana stock dropped 28 cents to $9.43 on the TSX.

A higher price for bullion also supported widespread strength among other TSX-listed gold stocks. The June gold contract gained $10.80 to close at $1,290.80 on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

On Wall Street, markets flirted with negative territory as investors digested new data on U.S. jobs figures that could push the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates earlier than anticipated.

The Dow Jones Industrials inched ahead 0.51 of a point to 16,533.12 while the Nasdaq slid 3.91 points to 4,264.13. The S&P 500 index lifted 1.33 points to 1,886.85.



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