Canada's main stock market in Toronto went higher Tuesday as the energy stocks gain strength on higher crude oil prices.
The Toronto Stock Exchange's benchmark Standard & Poor's/TSX Composite Index gained 23.61 point, or 0.17 percent, to close at 13,917.10 points. Three of the TSX index's eight main sub-sectors were higher.
Oil prices continued to rise Tuesday on shrinking crude output. The West Texas Intermediate for June delivery moved up 59 cents to settle at 48.31 U.S. dollars a barrel, while Brent crude for July delivery increased 31 cents to close at 49.28 dollars a barrel.
The TSX's energy group climbed, although some companies are facing renewed disruption to operations from a massive wildfire around the Fort McMurray oil sands hub. The wildfire moved toward energy production facilities on Tuesday, forcing more evacuation and extending a shutdown that has led to lost Canadian output of one million barrels a day.
Encana Corporation was up 4.03 percent to 9.55 Canadian dollars (7.40 U.S. dollars), Enbridge Inc. jumped 1.21 percent to 52.77 Canadian dollars, while Suncor Energy Inc. advanced 0.40 percent to 35.12 Canadian dollars after saying it had started a staged shutdown of its base plant in the region.
Syncrude, majority owned by Suncor, has evacuated the majority of its workforce to Edmonton. The company produces synthetic crude oil.
The fire also threatened Enbridge's Cheecham crude oil tank farm south of Fort McMurray. Enbridge said a firebreak around the terminal was being widened and crews were assessing other ways to suppress the fire like spraying down facilities. It said some pipelines in and out of the terminal were operating.
Junior oil sands producer Connacher Oil and Gas Ltd. filed for protection from creditors at an Alberta court on Monday, a victim of the two-year slump in global crude prices. Its shares were trading at 14 cents.
Valeant Pharmaceuticals International surged 7.80 percent to 37.57 Canadian dollars after it said it would make required securities filings to Canadian regulators. Laval, Quebec-based Valeant, which is under scrutiny over its drug pricing, business practices and accounting, said it planned to make the filings on or before June 10.
The materials group, which includes precious and base metals miners and fertilizer companies, added strength, with Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan Inc. gaining 3.14 percent to 21.37 Canadian dollars.
Shares of Bombardier Inc, which is in talks with the federal government for financial backing, recovered an early decline of 2 percent. A senior executive with Brazilian plane maker Embraer SA told media on Monday that it may challenge the state funding received by its Canadian rival at the World Trade Organization.
On the economic beat, Statistics Canada reported that manufacturing sales in the country fell 0.9 percent to 50.0 billion Canadian dollars in March, a second consecutive monthly decline, on weakness in the transportation equipment and primary metals industries.
Prior to the latest setback by wildfire, lost oil production was expected to average about 1.2 million barrels a day for 14 days, or roughly 985 million Canadian dollars (763 million U.S. dollars) in lost real gross domestic product (GDP), according to the Conference Board of Canada.
The disaster is expected to cut about 0.33 percent from Alberta's GDP in 2016, according to the nonprofit research group, but the rebuilding should add 0.4 percent to provincial growth next year.
The Canadian dollar traded lower at 0.7750 U.S. dollar, compared with Monday's closing rate of 0.7754 U.S. dollar.