CANADA STOCKS-TSX higher as commodity prices provide boost

Thu Oct 8, 2009 10:15am EDT
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 * TSX up 67.28 points at 11,417.48
 * Higher commodity prices help power rally
 * Improved sentiment on global economy helps
 (Adds details and comments)
 By Frank Pingue
 TORONTO, Oct 8 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index was
moderately higher on Thursday as a rise in commodity prices and
growing signs of a global economic recovery helped power key
energy players like EnCana Corp (ECA.TO: Quote).
 EnCana's shares rose 0.9 percent to C$61.55, while fellow
oil company Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO: Quote) was up 0.8
percent at C$71.32.
 Energy shares have been rallying most of the week, with
Thursday's move aided by a rise in oil prices above $70 a
barrel on a weaker U.S. dollar and signs of global economic
recovery. [O/R]
 Barrick Gold Corp (ABX.TO: Quote) shares were also a key driver of
the early gain, rising 0.7 percent to C$42.07, followed by
fellow gold miner Goldcorp (G.TO: Quote), whose shares were up 0.69
percent at C$44.94.
 The rally in gold-mining shares came as gold prices rallied
to record highs for a third successive session as persistent
weakness in the U.S. dollar fueled fund buying of the metal as
an alternative to the greenback. [GOL/]
 Financial shares also got a boost due to a growing string
of signs that the global economy in on the mend. The latest
boost to sentiment came via Wednesday's surprise profit from
Alcoa Inc [ID:nN07320124], followed by Australian jobs data
that topped expectations. [ID:nSYD431125]
 Shares of Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO: Quote) were up 0.5 percent
at C$56.59, while insurer Manulife Financial (MFC.TO: Quote) was up
0.9 percent at C$22.75.
 "It's a continued overall play on the U.S. dollar and the
recovery in the global economy," said Ian Nakamoto, director of
research at MacDougall, MacDougall & MacTier.
 "People just want to sell the U.S. dollar and buy other
currencies, especially the commodity currencies such as Canada
and also to buy commodities and commodity-related equities."
 At 10:00 a.m. (1400 GMT), the S&P/TSX composite index
.GSPTSE was up 67.28 points, or 0.59 percent, at 11,417.48.
 Other encouraging data included Canadian housing starts,
which fell 4.6 percent in September from August but still came
in ahead of expectations. The report increased investor
optimism that the economy is pulling out of recession.
($1=$1.06 Canadian)
 (Editing by Peter Galloway)