CANADA STOCKS-TSX advances as jump in oil price spurs energy rally

* TSX up 95.14 points, or 0.63 percent, to 15,244.71

* Eight of the TSX’s 10 main groups advance, energy jumps 3

* Hydro One Ltd says after markets close it will buy Avista

* CP Railway reports better-than-expected 2nd-qtr results
after markets

By Solarina Ho

TORONTO, July 19 (Reuters) – Canada’s main stock index rose
on Wednesday as a jump in the price of oil to a six-week high
sent energy stocks rallying across the board.

More than half of the index’s 10 most influential gainers
were energy names, with Suncor Energy Inc rising 2.2
percent to end at C$38.56. Canadian Natural Resources Ltd
added 1.7 percent to C$38.39. Encana Corp
jumped 4.7 percent to C$12.53 while Crescent Point Energy Corp
surged 8.6 percent to C$9.83.

The overall energy group saw its biggest one-day gain in
more than two months, rising 3.0 percent.

Oil prices jumped nearly 2 percent after a U.S. report
showed a bigger weekly draw than expected in crude and gasoline
stocks, along with an unexpected drop in distillate inventories.

“That caused not only a pop in the oil price, but a group
that has been disappointed has now turned around,” said John
Ing, president of Maison Placements Canada.

“Demand remains very strong even in the so-called summer
driving season.”

U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude for August settled
up 72 cents, or 1.6 percent, at $47.12 on its second to last day
as the front month.

The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index
rose 95.14 points, or 0.63 percent, to finish at

Of the index’s 10 main groups, eight were in positive

Financial services companies gained 0.5 percent, with
Manulife Financial Corp up 1.4 percent at C$25.30.

Dairy producer Saputo Inc soared 5.0 percent to
C$42.42 after RBC raised the company’s rating to “outperform”
from “perform”. Consumer staples rose 0.7 percent.

The utilities sector ended up 0.5 percent. Hydro One Ltd
stock will likely be in the spotlight on Thursday after
the Canadian utility firm announced after markets closed that it
will acquired U.S. rival Avista Corp.

Canada’s two largest railways ended lower, dragging the
overall industrials group down 0.6 percent. Canadian Pacific
Railway, finished down 1.3 percent at C$203.60. The rail
operator posted a better-than-expected second-quarter profit
after markets closed, attributed to earnings from higher
shipments of commodities.

In economic data, Canadian manufacturing sales posted the
largest gain in five months in May, rising 1.1 percent to C$54.6
billion ($43.2 billion) from April, topping forecasts and
hitting a record level on higher sales of motor vehicles and
parts, data from Statistics Canada showed.

Advancing issues outnumbered declining ones on the TSX by
169 to 70, for a 2.41-to-1 ratio on the upside.
(Reporting by Solarina Ho; Editing by James Dalgleish)