May 4, 2009 / 8:49 PM / in 8 years

CANADA STOCKS-Resources lead TSX up almost 4 pct to 2009 high

* TSX rises 3.93 pct, hits highest point since Nov 10

* Materials, energy groups lead advance (Adds details, comment)

By Cameron French

TORONTO, May 4 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index surged nearly 4 percent to its highest point in almost half a year, as optimism over the health of the financial sector and the economy in general pushed up issues across all industry groups.

Prices for oil and base metals surged as recent strong economic data built hopes that global consumption could increase, driving up the heavily-weighted TSX energy sector by 4.65 percent, and materials issues by 5.70 percent.

“It’s been a series of confidence builders that have led it in the latter parts of last week and continuing today,” said Ian Nakamoto, director of research at MacDougall MacDougall & MacTier.

He pointed to strong purchasing data out of China and U.S. ISM manufacturing figures released on Friday.

Adding to the optimism on Monday were data showing rising U.S. pending home sales and construction spending, as well as comments from a top U.S. Federal Reserve official that the recession was fading.

The S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE ended the session up 373.41 points, or 3.93 percent, at 9,870.37, it’s highest level since Nov. 10. All ten TSX subgroups ended higher.

The index rose 1.85 percent on Friday.

Energy stocks were led by Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO), up 8.3 percent at C$60.89, and Husky Energy, (HSE.TO), which climbed 5.7 percent to C$30.98.

Leading the way among materials producers was Inmet Mining, IMN.TO, which gained 14.7 percent to C$50.30, and Teck Resources TCKb.TO, which rose 12.2 percent to C$15.70.

Financials stocks climbed 4.32 percent, following the lead of U.S. banks that were boosted by hopes that they will be able to raise any capital they may need following the release of government stress tests this week.

RBC Capital Markets also upgraded several Canadian banks. [ID:nWNAB2477]

National Bank of Canada (NA.TO) climbed 6.6 percent to C$46.21, while insurer Sun Life Financial (SLF.TO) rose 5.3 percent to C$29.63. (Reporting by Cameron French; Editing by Jeffrey Hodgson)

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