CANADA STOCKS-TSX near flat as energy shares fall, gold miners gain

Mon Oct 31, 2016 5:24pm EDT
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(Adds strategist comment, updates prices to close)

* TSX ends up 2.11 points, or 0.01 percent, at 14,787.40

* Index gained 0.4 percent in October

* Eight of the TSX's 10 main groups move higher, energy drags

By Alastair Sharp

TORONTO, Oct 31 (Reuters) - Canada's benchmark stock index ended a touch higher on Monday as gold miners gained, but energy stocks fell and Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc slumped on a report its former executives are the focus of a U.S. criminal probe.

The index's energy sector, which accounts for one-fifth of the index's weight, fell 1.9 percent as oil prices settled at one-month lows on doubts about OPEC's ability to implement planned production cuts and expectations that the cartel had record output in October.

"Part of this is just letting a little bit of that enthusiastic air out of the balloon," said Craig Fehr, Canadian market strategist at Edward Jones in St. Louis, Missouri, referring to optimism about an OPEC deal that had helped push oil prices above $50 a barrel for much of October.

The index's most influential weights included Suncor Energy Inc, which fell 2.5 percent to C$40.25, and Cenovus Energy Inc, down 3.4 percent to C$19.35.   Continued...