TSX closes at one-month high; banks lead

Wed Aug 15, 2012 5:04pm EDT
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By Alastair Sharp

TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index closed at a one-month high on Wednesday, helped by small gains across its heaviest weighted sectors, but investors took little comfort given a lack of impetus from the United States or China.

Heavyweight banking stocks were the biggest advancers, but traders said overall volume was thin.

"There is so much uncertainty out there," said Sal Masionis, a stockbroker at Brant Securities. "America is getting over the proverbial wall of worry. Canadians are always more timid."

Mixed U.S. data kept investors guessing about further central bank action to stimulate growth.

"The economic stuff coming out of the States, that may have an effect, but we are in the summer doldrums and there is not a lot going on," said John Kinsey, a portfolio manager at Caldwell Securities.

He said that absence any surprises, Canadian equities were unlikely to move dramatically in either direction through August.

The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE unofficially closed up 51.83 points, or 0.4 percent, at 11,905.44. That was its first finish above 11,900 since July 7.

The index has been unable to muster a move of more than 0.7 percent in either direction over the past six sessions.   Continued...

A sign shows TSX information in Toronto September 15, 2008. REUTERS/Mark Blinch (CANADA)