TSX bounces higher on euro zone hopes

Mon Nov 28, 2011 5:34pm EST
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TORONTO (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index posted its biggest gain in nearly a month on Monday as commodity prices rose on hopes that European leaders were readying a plan to resolve the region's debt crisis.

Rising oil, gold and copper prices helped the TSX rally more than 1.5 percent, after it sagged 4 percent last week.

The heavily weighted materials sector, up 2 percent, was buoyed by stronger gold and copper prices. Both hit one-week highs on hopes that a meeting among euro zone ministers on Tuesday would pave the way for a 440 billion euro bailout fund, guided by the European Financial Stability Facility.

Among the sector's leaders were First Quantum Minerals, up nearly 10 percent at C$18.62, and Barrick Gold, up 2.4 percent at C$51.18.

"You're getting some positive comments out of Europe that they're about to bring that big hammer down and get that solution in place," said Philip Petursson, managing director of the portfolio advisory group at Manulife Asset Management.

The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index ended up 178.15 points, or 1.55 percent, at 11,640.21. It was the index's best one-day gain since November 3.

All 10 of the TSX's main sectors were higher, led by oil and gas issues, which climbed 2.7 percent, as U.S. crude oil spiked to nearly $100 a barrel.

Canadian Natural Resources led the sector's gains, jumping 3.7 percent to C$35.20. Suncor Energy was also among the biggest risers, up 2.7 percent to C$28.91.

"Equities have been so beaten up that any hope of something positive coming out of (Europe) looks like enough to get markets moving pretty significantly," said Robert Kavcic, an economist at BMO Capital Markets.   Continued...