CANADA STOCKS-TSX surges on commodities, stimulus hopes

Mon Dec 8, 2008 10:22am EST
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*Resources lead TSX higher; oil rises above $43

*Oilexco soars 22 pct after report says it up for sale (Adds quote, details)

TORONTO Dec 8 (Reuters) - The Toronto Stock Exchange's main index rose sharply on Monday morning as oil and metals prices climbed and as optimism rose that global stimulus measures would avert a deeper slide in the economy.

Heavily weighted stocks that propelled the market higher included oil company EnCana Corp (ECA.TO: Quote), up 7.4 percent at C$54.61, and miner Barrick Gold (ABX.TO: Quote), up 5.8 percent at $33.92.

Toronto stocks followed equities around the world higher with investors focusing on a possible rescue plan for U.S. automakers, a proposed U.S. jobs plan and more government stimulus measures to try to reverse economic malaise. [MKTS/GLOB]

In China and Europe, leaders were set to plot next steps on Monday, while stimulus measures already presented, planned or pending helped push stock markets higher. [ID:nHKG329944]

U.S. President-elect Barack Obama unveiled stimulus plans at the weekend that featured the largest U.S. infrastructure program since the 1950s and the creation of 2.5 million jobs. For links to more stories see [ID:nCRISIS]

"Between those things that's enough to give cause for investors to step in," said Peter Chandler, senior vice-president at Canaccord Capital in Waterloo, Ontario.

"There is unprecedented amounts of money on the sidelines and this market is waiting for a reason to get into the market."   Continued...