Gold miners keep TSX buoyed in quiet holiday trading

Wed Dec 28, 2016 5:24pm EST
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By Solarina Ho

TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index ended slightly higher on Wednesday as gold mining stocks lead gains in quiet trading.

Activity was lighter than usual due to the post-Christmas shortened week.

"I'd be careful about reading too, too much into moves one way or the other on days like today. Canada volumes are off about 40 percent from where they generally are," said Ian Scott, equity analyst at Manulife Asset Management. "Small volumes, so certain stocks are having outsized moves."

Gold companies dominated the index's top 10 most influential movers. Barrick Gold (ABX.TO: Quote) rose 5.2 percent to C$20.71, and Goldcorp Inc (G.TO: Quote) climbed 4.8 percent to C$17.85.

The overall materials group, which includes precious and base metals miners and fertilizer companies, added 3.3 percent.

The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE rose 32.95 points, or 0.21 percent, to 15,361.1.

Of the index's 10 main groups, half were in positive territory.

Energy stocks climbed 0.3 percent, bolstered in part by crude prices that remained near 2015 highs.   Continued...

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