CANADA STOCKS-TSX gains as commodities rally; RIM dives

Thu Apr 1, 2010 4:34pm EDT
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* TSX gains 0.9 percent to 12,151.06

* Energy, materials lead index higher

* RIM dives 8 percent after results (Updates to close, adds details, quotes)

By Claire Sibonney

TORONTO, April 1 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index shot higher on Thursday as upbeat economic data prompted fresh fund flows into commodities at the start of the quarter, but a steep slide by Research In Motion RIM.TO tempered the gains.

The TSX's energy group rose more than 3 percent as oil hit an 18-month high. Suncor Energy Inc (SU.TO: Quote), Canada's biggest oil company, jumped 3.9 percent to C$34.32, while Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO: Quote) surged more than 4 percent to C$78.23. [O/R]

Commodity prices got a boost as factories in the United States, Europe and Asia cranked up production last month, suggesting recovery from a deep recession was taking root in economies around the globe. [ID:nSGE630021]

"The single biggest driver today is definitely coming from the economic data," said Youssef Zohny , associate portfolio manager at Van Arbor Asset Management in Vancouver.

"We are seeing inventory rebuilding and that bodes well for material and energy companies," Zohny said.   Continued...