REFILE-UPDATE 2-Toronto stocks surge on financial rescue plans

Fri Sep 19, 2008 12:47pm EDT
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(Refiles to correct date in first paragraph to Sept 19)

* TSX benchmark index surges more than 5 pct higher

* Financials climb on news of U.S. rescue plans

* Energy issues rise as oil rebounds to $100 a barrel (Adds details, background)

TORONTO, Sept 19 (Reuters) - The Toronto Stock Exchange's main index was up more than 5 percent at midday Friday, as investors cheered a series of moves by central banks and governments to restore confidence in the global financial system.

The big bounce came on news the U.S. government was crafting a sweeping multibillion-dollar plan to rescue the country's battered financial sector and placing a temporary halt on short-selling. See [ID:nN13574113]

"You don't have just one move but several packages that have come across by the U.S. Federal Reserve and other central banks," said Joe Ismail, technical analyst at Maison Placements Canada.

"What they are trying to do is calm the financial system. Its needed to stabilize all these massive loans outstanding on the books."

By around noon, the S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE was up 675.02 points, or 5.5 percent, at 12,739.59, with all of its 10 main groups higher.   Continued...