TSX halts three-day slide, but energy stocks weigh

Thu May 14, 2015 5:06pm EDT
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By Alastair Sharp

TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index broke a three-day slide on Thursday in a broad rally in which gold miners gained on higher bullion prices as the U.S. dollar weakened, but the heavyweight oil and gas sector fell along with crude prices.

The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE ended up 47.40 points, or 0.32 percent, at 15,028.12. Nine of the index's 10 main sectors gained.

That followed a 1.2 percent drop over the previous three days, in which bond market gyrations and economic worries rattled investors.

"The market is vulnerable still," said John Ing, president of Maison Placements Canada. "The move in gold is the canary in the coal mine."

The price of bullion hit a three-month high as the U.S. dollar came under pressure following mixed economic data that pushed back expectations for higher U.S. interest rates. [GOL/]

First Quantum Minerals Ltd FM.TO, which mines gold as well as copper and other metals, gained 1.9 percent to C$18.44. Goldcorp Inc G.TO added 1.1 percent to C$23.49.

Ing said that with interest rates globally expected to rise in the long term, dividend-focused stocks such as telecoms and utilities will likely fall out of favor.

"We're turning a corner, and those previous havens and attractions, in a higher interest rate environment aren't going to be participating," he said.   Continued...

A man walks past an old Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) sign in Toronto, June 23, 2014. REUTERS/Mark Blinch