Gold miners, financials help TSX rise; Valeant surges

Thu Nov 19, 2015 5:04pm EST
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By Alastair Sharp

TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index rose on Thursday, with higher bullion prices boosting gold miners and confidence that the U.S. Federal Reserve will raise interest rates helping financial stocks, while Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc (VRX.TO: Quote) surged.

The energy sector fell 1.5 percent, notching outsized losses relative to a slight pullback in crude oil prices. [O/R]

"I think the energy sector will continue to be weak," said John Stephenson, president and CEO at Stephenson & Company Capital Management, citing tough fundamentals that have dogged the commodity.

Valeant rallied 15.3 percent to C$111.79, its biggest one-day gain since early 2011. Still, the stock remains far below its price of C$300 in September as the company faces sharp scrutiny of its business practices.

The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE ended up 73.86 points, or 0.55 percent, at 13,473.83. Seven of its 10 main groups gained.

The materials group rallied 1.2 percent, helped by a firming gold price. Barrick Gold Corp (ABX.TO: Quote) rose 4.3 percent to C$10.04, and Goldcorp Inc (G.TO: Quote) was up 2.2 percent at C$16.18.

Gold futures GCc1 rose 0.9 percent to $1,080.5 an ounce, and copper prices CMCU3 advanced 0.4 percent to $4,630.35 a tonne. [GOL/][MET/L]

U.S. crude CLc1 prices settled down 0.5 percent at $40.54 a barrel, while Brent LCOc1 added 0.3 percent to $44.25.[O/R]   Continued...

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