Toronto stocks helped by golds in volatile day

Wed Jan 9, 2008 5:22pm EST
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By Leah Schnurr

TORONTO (Reuters) - The Toronto Stock Exchange's main index ended higher on Wednesday after a choppy session as bargain-hunting and gains in resource issues helped offset uneasiness over the prospect of a U.S. recession.

The index fell more than 100 points earlier in the day, but reversed direction in a late-afternoon bounce to close higher for the first time in three days.

Shares of gold producers helped pull the index up, as the price of bullion hit another record high before finishing lower on profit-taking and weaker oil prices.

The gold-mining subsector added 1.6 percent, while Barrick Gold ABX.TO was up C$1.19, or 2.4 percent, at C$50.65, and Centerra Gold CG.TO rose 40 Canadian cents, or 3 percent, to C$13.70.

The broader materials sector, home to resource shares, rose 0.6 percent.

"I think this year is going to be one of those years of just volatility," said Adrian Mastracci, portfolio manager and president at KCM Wealth Management Inc in Vancouver.

"I think we have to get used to it, probably more often than not, with some huge numbers going one way or the other."

The S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE closed up 38.19 points, or 0.28 percent, at 13,579.94 but six of the TSX's 10 main groups remained in negative territory.   Continued...