Canadian Pacific's five spinoffs begin trading

Four out of five of Canadian Pacific Ltd.'s spin-offs posted gains on the TSE on Wednesday, their first day of fully independent trading.

Canadian Pacific Railway enjoyed the best day, picking up more than 7 per cent to close at $24.28, while coal-producer Fording gained more than 5 per cent.

CP Ships and PanCanadian Energy posted smaller gains.

Only Fairmont Hotels & Resorts lost ground, giving up 50 cents to close at $27.50, reflecting economic concerns for the travel industry in the wake of last month's terrorist attacks against the United States.

The five companies' first day of trading on their own marked the culmination of a "starburst" process that began last February, CP said in a release. Last week, CP shareholders officially approved today's split-up.

"This marks a new beginning for five wonderful companies and brings a number of significant investment opportunities to the marketplace," CP Ltd.'s president and chairman David O'Brien said.

While the old CP is gone, O'Brien will continue as chairman of PanCanadian and as a director of Fairmont.

There has been much take about the future of the five newly independent firms. O'Brien himself has said some of the firms may be taken over, but added they could be on the acquisition trail as well.