CANADA STOCKS-Toronto index carried higher by gold-mining shares

Fri Mar 13, 2009 4:30pm EDT
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* Index rises 21.12 points to 8,303.39

* Gold-mining shares behind latest TSX gain

* TSX ends week with gain of 9.4 percent (Adds details, comments and official numbers)

By Frank Pingue

TORONTO, March 13 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index ended a volatile session with a slight gain on Friday as shares of gold-miners rallied around higher bullion while financials continued to take comfort on news that the U.S. banking sector is finding stability.

After a massive three-day rally where the index surged 9.5 percent, investors decided to take their foot off the gas pedal in the latest session. But a push higher by gold-mining stocks was enough to carry the overall index a slim gain.

Goldcorp G.TO headlined the latest TSX gain as its shares rose 3.7 percent to close at C$37.84, followed by Barrick Gold (ABX.TO: Quote), whose shares ended up 2.6 percent at C$37.89.

The gain paled in comparison to the triple-digit runs made in the last three sessions, but it was enough to give the index its first four-session streak of higher closes since Feb. 9.

"We didn't see a continuation of the strength from earlier in the week," said Kate Warne, Canadian market strategist at Edward Jones in St. Louis, Missouri.   Continued...