Big 3 Canada telecom stocks surge as Verizon threat fades
Shares of Bell, Rogers, Telus gain as Verizon indicates no interest in Canadian market
Shares in Canada's big three telecom companies are surging on news that U.S. giant Verizon said it's no longer interested in entering Canada's wireless market.
Stock in Rogers soared the most in afternoon trading on the Toronto Stock Exchange and closed up 7.2 per cent, or $3.00, to $44.59.
Telus bounced up 6.7 per cent, or $2.18, to $34.50 at the close, while BCE was up 3.8 per cent, or $1.67, at $44.86.
Rogers, Telus and Bell say they've had a cumulative loss of $14.7 billion on the capital markets since the news broke in June that Verizon was considering entering Canada.
But with Verizon no longer interested in moving north, it leaves the federal Conservatives with no obvious source of serious competition to the existing big three players.
Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam said on the weekend that speculation that his company might try to compete in Canada was "way overblown."
His remarks came after Verizon announced it was spending $130 billion US to buy out the 45 per cent stake held in the company by U.K.-based Vodafone.
Shares in another Canadian telecommunications giant, BlackBerry, also rose Tuesday on separate news that Microsoft had made a deal to buy Nokia Corp's handset operations.
BlackBerry shares were up about two per cent, gaining 21 cents to trade at $10.85 in early afternoon trading on the Toronto Stock Exchange. They closed up nine cents at $10.21.
The Microsoft-Nokia deal raised investors' hopes that the Waterloo, Ont.-based company could be purchased by another technology firm, though it also means Microsoft is unlikely to participate as a bidder.
BlackBerry is in the midst of a review of its "strategic alternatives," which could result in the sale of its operations or an agreement to take the company private, though so far no potential bidders have publicly emerged.