May 6, 2011 / 9:28 PM / in 6 years

CANADA STOCKS-TSX rallies as jobs data lifts sentiment

   * TSX up 111.22 points, or 0.83 pct, at 13,566.60
 * Eight of 10 main sectors end higher
 * Index down 2.7 percent on week  (Adds details, analysts comments)
 By Solarina Ho
 TORONTO, May 6 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index rebounded from a week-long retreat on Friday as strong employment numbers in both Canada and the United States lifted sentiment, easing some of the worries that sent commodity prices into a tailspin earlier this week.
 The dominant energy and materials sectors, which together make up about 50 percent of the TSX index, were up 1.63 percent and 0.87 percent respectively, though both resource groups gave back earlier gains.
 “We seemed to have lost steam,” said Elvis Picardo, analyst and strategist at Global Securities.
 “That may indicate some reluctance among some investors to leave long positions over the weekend, which is not really surprising, given the volatility we’ve had so far this week in the steep decline in commodity prices.”
 Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO), which reported a 94 percent plunge in first-quarter profit after markets closed on Thursday, managed to rise 2.57 percent to C$42.30. Suncor Energy (SU.TO) gained 1.67 percent to C$40.26.
 Teck Resources TCKb.TO advanced 2.13 percent to C$48.80 and Kinross Gold (K.TO) gained 1.75 percent to C$14.54. [ID:nN05288931]
 The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE finished 111.22 points, or 0.83 percent higher, at 13,566.60. Eight of the 10 main sectors were stronger.
 The TSX fell about 2.7 percent on the week, with four straight days of declines that drove it to its lowest levels since mid-March.
 “One of the biggest drivers this week has been commodities, obviously. We were seeing quite a bit of speculation come out of the commodity market, that’s ultimately good for the economy and stocks,” said Youssef Zohny, portfolio manager at Van Arbor Asset Management in Vancouver.
 Canada and the United States created far more jobs than expected in April, with Canada adding 58,300 jobs in April, more than double expectations, and recovering all the full-time positions lost in the recession.
 South of the border, hiring hit a five-year high in April, indicating underlying strength in the U.S. economy. [ID:nOAT004799] [ID:nN06160819]
 U.S. data helped boost gold prices, with bargain-hunters taking advantage and getting back into the market. Copper eked out a modest rise on the heels of the jobs data, but strength in the U.S. dollar against the euro sapped earlier gains.
 Oil prices erased an early session bounce though declines were modest compared to the record collapse on Thursday. [O/R] [GOL/] [MET/L]
 Manulife Financial (MFC.TO) was the most influential gainer on the index, surging 5.11 percent to C$17.47 after several analysts raised their price targets for North America’s largest life insurer. [ID:nL3E7G61CT]
 Manulife posted a lower quarterly profit on Thursday on claims related to the Japanese earthquake, but said it was actively on the lookout for acquisitions, especially in Asia. The overall financial group climbed 0.68 percent. [ID:nN05267082]
 ($1=$0.97 Canadian)  (Additional reporting by Claire Sibonney; editing by Rob Wilson)                                        

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