Banks, gold shares drive TSX gains as sentiment improves

Fri Apr 19, 2013 5:14pm EDT
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By John Tilak

TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index climbed on Friday, as improved investor sentiment and a rise in the price of some commodities fueled gains in financial and material shares, offsetting a decline in energy companies.

The gains failed to stem a 2.2 percent fall in the index this week, its second-biggest weekly decline of the year, triggered by a giant commodities selloff on Monday, when the price of gold posted its biggest ever drop.

Concerns about the global economic recovery and growth in China have weighed on the resource-heavy market.

Investors closely watched finance leaders of the G20 economies edge away from a long-running drive toward government austerity in rich nations, rejecting the idea of setting hard targets for reducing national debt.

Analysts said the lower prices resulting from the selloff earlier in the week did attract some buyers on Friday.

"The panic fears have subsided and things are stabilizing," said Colin Cieszynski, senior market analyst at CMC Markets.

"There's still a sense of caution out there even though people are not running for the exits," he added.

The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE closed up 69.21 points, 0.58 percent, at 12,065.55.   Continued...

A Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) logo is seen in Toronto November 9, 2007. REUTERS/Mark Blinch