Toronto's main market moved up slightly Tuesday afternoon, amid a batch of earnings reports and economic data out of the U.S.
In Canadian corporate news, Canadian National Railway (TSE:CNR) (NYSE:CNI) reported Tuesday a higher fourth quarter profit on record carloads, revenues and revenue ton-miles, and said that its board approved a 15% increase in its 2013 quarterly dividend.
Meanwhile, Research In Motion (TSE:RIM) (NASDAQ:RIMM) shares rose 0.86% in Toronto as the Waterloo-based company had its rating raised to sector outperform from sector perform by Scotiabank analyst Gus Papageorgiou, who said that even modest success of the BlackBerry 10 could lead to stronger earnings per share.
In metals and mining news, Endeavour Mining Corp. (TSE:EDV) (ASX:EVR) (OTCQX:EDVMF) saw its shares rise over 5% after it reported 2012 production that exceeded guidance and said its preliminary economic assessment (PEA) shows potential for 160,000 ounces per year from the Houndé gold project in Burkina Faso in 2016.
First Quantum took the bid for Inmet hostile earlier this month, as it brought the offer directly to shareholders after being rejected by Inmet several times. First Quantum wants to acquire Inmet in its efforts to own Cobre Panama - the world's largest undeveloped copper deposit. Inmet’s share rose 0.51% on the news.
Western Potash Corp. (TSE:WPX) (FSE:AHE) says it has hired UBS Securities Canada to assist the company in looking at ways to secure financing for the development of its Milestone property in southern Saskatchewan.
After tax, the project, which is due to come online in 2016, is estimated to have a base case net present value of C$2.44 billion, with an 18.6% internal rate of return (IRR) assuming a discount rate of 10%. Pretax, the project yields a net present value of C$3.6 billion, and an IRR of 21%.
Shares of Pan American Silver Corp. (NASDAQ: PAAS) (TSE: PAA) moved up by more than 2% on Tuesday, after the company said it produced a record amount of silver in the fourth quarter and forecasted growth in output for 2013, largely a result of the Dolores Mine acquisition last year. Pan American bought Minefinders Corp, which owned the Dolores mine in Mexico, for about C$1.5 billion in 2012.
Turning to the junior resource sector, shares of Marifil Mines (CVE:MFM) rose 40% Tuesday after the company revealed preliminary metallurgical results from the Zone 34 oxide gold target at its San Roque project in Argentina, saying it found high gold recoveries.
The results for the 96-hour leach were 92.43%, 85.28%, and 95.14% recoveries of gold, respectively. The company also announced that silver recoveries were lower than expected, but that this is typical for heap leach operations. It noted that silver accounts for less than 20% of the dollar value of the deposit.
Northern Vertex Mining (CVE:NEE) rallied more than 10% on Tuesday, a day after the company provided an update on its project development plans for its Moss gold-silver property in Arizona, with a preliminary economic assessment (PEA) expected this quarter. Investors are clearly eager for the data, with its stock up 13 cents this afternoon to $1.33. In the last month, its shares have soared over 20%.
One of Afferro Mining's (LON:AFF CVE:AFF) independent non-executive directors, Ousmane Kane, has resigned to concentrate on his other role as vice chairman of African Iron Ore.
Afferro is currently in a possible takeover situation having announced last month that a number of suitors had approached the Cameroon-focused iron ore explorer. Indian group Jindal Steel and Power is said to be one of the potential bidders.
Rock Tech Lithium (CVE:RCK) announced Tuesday the first set of results from the drill program it announced last month at its Lochaber graphite property in Quebec, returning more high grades of graphite.
Notable results from the latest drill holes include 59.48 metres of graphitic carbon (Cg) at various depths with grades ranging from 1.52% to 14.61% Cg in hole PB-12-14. This includes 13.59 metres at 2.08% Cg, 9.18 metres at 4.78% Cg, 3.59 metres at 9.54% Cg and 2.91 metres at 3.71% Cg.
On the CNSX, RESAAS Services (CNSX:RSS) has inked a new service agreement with Century 21 In Town Realty, adding yet another real estate firm to its social network for real estate professionals. The news comes just days after RESAAS announced a new deal with Southern California real estate firm Star Real Estate South County to join its platform.
In analyst notes, Casimir Capital analyst Ryan Galloway Tuesday raised his price target on Bellatrix Exploration (TSE:BXE) to $9.00 from $8.25 previously after the oil and gas company announced a key South Korean joint venture.
Stonecap Securities mining analyst Christos Doulis kept his outperform rating and $1.70 price target on Soltoro (CVE:SOL) Tuesday, after the mineral explorer released drill results from its El Rayo project in Mexico.