* TSX up 33.83 points, or 0.28 percent, at 12,144.92
* Financials lead 8 of 10 main index sectors higher
* U.S. jobs data eases fears of double-dip recession (Adds details)
By Jennifer Kwan
TORONTO, Sept 3 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index notched its eighth straight session in the black on Friday as a stronger than expected U.S. employment report eased fears about a sputtering recovery.
Toronto followed U.S. equities higher after data showed U.S. nonfarm employment fell less than forecast in August, while private payrolls growth was higher than expected. [ID:nN02227856] [.N]
Financials, often a play on the health of the economy, led eight of the TSX’s 10 main groups higher with an 1.3 percent advance. Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD.TO) rose 1.7 percent to C$74.40, while Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO) climbed 1 percent to C$52.80. Insurer Manulife (MFC.TO) surged 2.9 percent to C$13.23.
“Jobs numbers in the United States were better than expected. Not great, but still better,” said Aaron Fennell, senior market strategist at Lind-Waldock Canada. “I think that implies to the market that the recovery is a little bit stronger than otherwise thought.”
The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE finished the session up 33.83 points, or 0.28 percent, at 12,144.92. Earlier, the index hit 12,197.89, its highest level since May 13.
The index rose 2 percent on the week, its strongest showing since early July.
The blue chip S&P/TSX 60 index .TSE60 closed 1.99 points, or 0.28 percent, higher at 708.03.
Gold prices edged lower as the U.S. jobs data undermined gold’s safe-haven attraction. [GOL/]
“When there’s bad news that drives the price of gold higher. That wasn’t a piece of bad news today,” said Fennell, referring to the jobs data.
The global gold subsector of the TSX dropped nearly 1 percent, weighing on the broader resource-laden materials sector, which fell 0.7 percent. Barrick Gold (ABX.TO) was off 1.1 percent at C$47.09.
Goldcorp (G.TO) fell 3.7 percent to C$44.49, also pressured by news it intends to buy Argentina-focused gold miner Andean Resources Ltd AND.TO for C$3.6 billion, trumping a competing offer from Eldorado Gold Corp ELD.TO. [ID:nN03266708]
Andean Resources, the top net gainer on the market, soared 45 percent to C$6.98, while Eldorado fell 3 percent to C$19.89.
Potash Corp (POT.TO), down 1.1 percent at C$154.55, remained in the spotlight after a report said Chinese officials have ordered state companies to meet investment bankers to explore ways to block BHP Billiton’s (BHP.AX) $39 billion bid for Potash. [ID:nSGE682003]
The TSX is closed on Monday for the Labour Day holiday.
$1=$1.04 Canadian Reporting by Jennifer Kwan; editing by Peter Galloway