April 8, 2009 / 4:31 PM / 8 years ago

CANADA STOCKS-TSX rises as oil prices turn higher

2 Min Read

* TSX up 73.61 points at 8,898.36

* Energy shares headline rally

* Insurers offer support (Adds details and comments)

By Frank Pingue

TORONTO, April 8 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index was up 1 percent at midday on Wednesday as oil prices rebounded and gave a boost to energy shares, while financials rose on news of U.S. aid for insurers.

Energy shares had stumbled at the start of the session but turned higher as data from the U.S. Department of Energy showed crude stockpiled rose less than expected, which helped send oil prices back above $51 a barrel. [ID:nSP425582]

Suncor Energy (SU.TO) was up 3 percent at C$30.13, while Petro-Canada PCA.TO also rallied 3 percent to C$36.81. The energy group as a whole was up 1.4 percent.

At 12:15 p.m. (1615 GMT), the S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE was up 73.61 points, or 0.83 percent, at 8,898.36 after spending the first hour of the session relatively flat. Just before midday it had rallied as high as 1 percent.

Five of the TSX's 10 sectors were higher.

"The key reversal (in the TSX) came from the oil inventory data," said Francis Campeau, a broker at MF Global Canada, in Montreal. "That was the catalyst."

Another support behind the TSX's turnaround came from the weighty financials index, which rallied after the U.S. Treasury Department outlined the status of its plans to aid some life insurers under an existing rescue plan. [ID:nN08522342]

Insurer Manulife Financial (MFC.TO) was up 2 percent at C$16.50, while Sun Life Financial (SLF.TO) was up 4.6 percent at C$24.84, helping the financials index to a 0.66 percent gain.

$1=$1.24 Canadian Editing by Peter Galloway

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