CANADA STOCKS-TSX cheers progress on debt talks, earnings

Thu Jul 21, 2011 5:03pm EDT
 
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 * Index up 93.47 points, or 0.7 pct, at 13,434.30
 * Nine of 10 sectors stronger
 * Progress on U.S., euro zone debt crises cheered
 (Updates to close, adds details)
 By Ka Yan Ng
 TORONTO, July 21 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock market
index rallied to a higher close on Thursday, encouraged by
signs of progress in efforts to resolve the debt crises in
Europe and the United States.
 Strong U.S. earnings underscored the bullish sentiment and
the composite index rose as high as 13,469.11, its strongest
level since July 7. It pared gains by the close, however, and
ended almost 9 points shy of being in positive territory on the
year.
 The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
.GSPTSE closed up 93.47 points, or 0.7 percent, at 13,434.30.
Nine of its 10 sectors rose.
 "It's (up) pretty much across the board," said Elvis
Picardo, strategist and vice president of research at Global
Securities in Vancouver. "It speaks to the fact that, at least
on the day, the appetite for risk is back."
 Energy stocks, up 1.47 percent, were boosted by rising oil
prices and played the biggest role in leading the market
higher.
 Suncor Energy (SU.TO: Quote), the most heavily weighted riser, was
up 2.48 percent to C$39.28. Fellow oil company Canadian Natural
Resources (CNQ.TO: Quote) rose 1.7 percent to C$41.36.
 Financial shares jumped 1.11 percent, finding encouragement
in results from Morgan Stanley (MS.N: Quote) that far surpassed Wall
Street expectations. Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD.TO: Quote) climbed 1.28
percent to C$80.22, while Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO: Quote) advanced
1.1 percent to C$54.15.
 The rally's big catalyst was the agreement by euro zone
leaders at an emergency summit to give their financial rescue
fund sweeping new powers to help Greece overcome its debt
crisis and prevent market instability from spreading through
the region.
 In the United States, two major newspapers reported the
White House and top Republican lawmakers were close to striking
a debt-reduction deal. That would remove the major political
hurdle to raising the statutory $14.3 trillion debt ceiling so
that the United States can avoid a default in early August and
the loss of its top-notch credit rating.
Gold-mining stocks lost some safe-haven appeal on Thursday
and were among the principal decliners.
 ($1=$0.94 Canadian)
 (Reporting by Ka Yan Ng; editing by Peter Galloway)