CANADA STOCKS-Energy shares help push TSX above 12,000

Mon Mar 8, 2010 10:37am EST
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* TSX up 21.30 points, or 0.18 percent, at 11,996.44

* Energy keeps TSX higher; gold miners weigh

* Convention puts Canadian miners in spotlight (Adds details, quotes)

By Jennifer Kwan

TORONTO, March 8 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock market index pushed higher on Monday morning, touching its highest level in eight weeks as rising oil prices helped to lift energy shares.

Suncor Energy SU.TO was up 0.7 percent at C$32.10 and EnCana Corp ECA.TO rose 0.5 percent to C$35.38 as oil prices climbed toward $82 a barrel on positive sentiment about economic recovery. [O/R]

"I think people are a little more optimistic of the global economic recovery. If that is the case that is going to be stronger demand for natural resources," said Bruce Latimer, trader at Dundee Securities.

At 10:08 a.m. (1508 GMT), the S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE was up 21.30 points, or 0.18 percent, at 11,996.44. At the open, the index pierced 12,000 and touched its highest level since Jan. 11.

Also supporting the index's move higher was BCE Inc BCE.TO, which rose 0.7 percent to C$30.60 after Barron's cited BCE's potential for dividend increases and share buybacks. [ID:nN07134941]   Continued...