CANADA STOCKS-TSX gets early boost from energy shares

Fri Apr 17, 2009 10:12am EDT
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* TSX up 42.59 points at 9,385.96

* Energy shares up 1 percent and lead early gain

* Royal Bank of Canada charge tempers move higher (Adds details and comments)

TORONTO, April 17 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index was higher on Friday morning as a rise in the price of oil sparked a rally in energy shares, but the index's move was tempered by news of a charge at Canada's biggest bank.

The energy sector rose 1 percent and was responsible for the lion's share of the TSX's gain as the price of oil, a key Canadian commodity and export, held above $50 a barrel.

Shares of EnCana Corp (ECA.TO: Quote) were up 1.4 percent at C$55.06, while Suncor Energy (SU.TO: Quote) followed with a gain of 1 percent to C$31.00.

"The strength in the overall market amazes me because people keep talking about a pullback, but whenever there is a pullback people have stepped in to buy," said Ian Nakamoto, director of research at MacDougall, MacDougall & MacTier.

The TSX remains about 25 percent above the five-year low it hit in early March, which has left many experts calling for a some retracement, but that has yet to come.

Even an announcement late on Thursday by Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO: Quote) that it would take a charge of roughly C$1.03 billion in the second quarter did not appear to have any significant impact on the index. [ID:nN16291534]   Continued...