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

Mon May 4, 2009 4:47pm EDT
 
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* 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.   Continued...