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UPDATE 2-CANADA STOCKS-TSX hits record high on boost from pot stocks, U.S. stimulus bets

(Updates prices to add milestone)

Jan 7 (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index rose to a record high in late morning trade 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.

* At 11:12 a.m. ET (16:12 GMT), the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index was up 154.19 points, or 0.86%, at 17,982.3.

* 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, with the country’s trade deficit with the world narrowing slightly more than expected, data from Statistics Canada showed on Thursday.

* 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 its 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 Resources, down 2%.

* 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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