UPDATE 1-Toronto stocks rebound after 100-point fall

Thu Feb 7, 2008 11:29am EST
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TORONTO Feb 7 (Reuters) - Toronto stocks were flat by late morning on Thursday, after rebounding from steep earlier losses, as a shift into financials was enough to just offset a downturn by resource issues.

The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE was up 16.06 points, or 0.1 percent, at 12,883.26 after dropping as low as 12,747.61 near the start.

The rebound followed a drop of 3.4 percent over the past three sessions on worries over the health of the U.S. economy.

"The markets are overly reactive to both positive and negative announcements, and on any given day we are going to see tremendous volatility for the next three to six months," said Michael Sprung, president of Sprung and Co Investment Counsel.

But Sprung still sees the trend to the downside on expectation of more disappointing financial news amid the ongoing turmoil in the credit market.

Seven of the TSX index's 10 main sectors were higher, led by a 1 percent gain by the financial group and a 0.6 percent boost in the industrial sector. Utilities were up 0.4 percent.

All of the country's biggest banks were higher including Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO: Quote), which added 98 Canadian cents to C$51.10, and Bank of Nova Scotia <BNS.TO,> which rose 60 Canadian cents to C$48.50.

Insurer Manulife Financial (MFC.TO: Quote) gained 16 Canadian cents to C$36.70.   Continued...