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CANADA STOCKS-TSX rises on boost from pot stocks, U.S. stimulus bets

Jan 7 (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index rose on Thursday, boosted by cannabis stocks and hopes for an extended U.S. stimulus package to aid economic recovery after Democrats took control of the Senate.

* The healthcare sector rose 4%, providing the biggest boost to the index.

* The energy sector climbed 1.5% as U.S. crude prices were unchanged a barrel, while Brent crude lost 0.1%.

* Hours after hundreds of President Donald Trump’s supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol in a harrowing assault on American democracy, a shaken Congress on Thursday formally certified Democrat Joe Biden’s election victory.

* Canada’s exports rose in November, while imports edged down, with the country’s trade deficit with the world narrowing slightly more than expected, data from Statistics Canada showed on Thursday.

* At 9:41 a.m. ET (14:41 GMT), the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index was up 129.91 points, or 0.73%, at 17,958.02.

* The financials sector gained 0.4%. The industrials sector rose 1.1%.

* The materials sector, which includes precious and base metals miners and fertilizer companies, added 0.3% as gold futures rose 0.5% to $1,916 an ounce.

* On the TSX, 149 issues were higher, while 66 issues declined for a 2.26-to-1 ratio favouring gainers, with 19.95 million shares traded.

* The largest percentage gainers on the TSX were Ballard Power Systems Inc, which jumped 11.9%, trading at highest since May 2002 and Aphria Inc, which rose 8.5%.

* New Gold Inc fell 2.7%, the most on the TSX. The second biggest decliner was Pretium Resourcs, down 2.0%.

* The most heavily traded shares by volume were Nevada Copper Corp, Zenabis Global Inc and St. Augustine Gold and Copper Ltd.

* The TSX posted 17 new 52-week highs and no new lows.

* Across all Canadian issues there were 102 new 52-week highs and 4 new lows, with total volume of 46.19 million shares. (Reporting by Shivani Kumaresan in Bengaluru; Editing by Shinjini Ganguli)

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