UPDATE 1-Toronto stocks up, but off highs, as RIM rises

Thu Dec 20, 2007 10:35am EST
 
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(Adds details, analyst's view)

TORONTO Dec 20 (Reuters) - The Toronto Stock Exchange's main index was higher on Thursday morning but off early highs as weakness in the financial sector offset strength in energy shares and a big jump by Research In Motion RIM.TO.

RIM, the BlackBerry maker, reports quarterly results later in the day. It was the TSX's biggest weighted gainer by far, up C$2.74 at C$104.83.

Also in the TSX tech group, Cognos Inc CSN.TO climbed 6 Canadian cents to C$57.49 after it reported a near doubling of third-quarter profit. For details, see: [nN20156607]

Overall, the S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE was up 6 points, or 0.04 percent, at 13,395.82 with three of its 10 main sectors in positive terrain.

The index climbed as much as 0.6 percent just after the opening bell, and rose 0.2 percent in the previous session.

Energy stocks rose 0.4 percent, while the smaller information technology sector was up 0.5 percent.

On the downside, financial stocks dipped 0.2 percent with Toronto-Dominion (TD.TO: Quote) off 50 Canadian cents at C$69.55.

Joe Ismail, technical analyst at Maison Placements Canada, noted stock options expire around this time of year, which could lead to more volatility on the TSX through the end of the week.

The past two days have been typified by strong rises in morning trade followed by a drops in the afternoon. The TSX index has fallen in four of the past five days.

Elsewhere, Forbes Medi-Tech Inc FMI.TOFMTI.O edged 2 Canadian cents lower to 43 Canadian cents after it said early on Thursday it seeks to convert to a new company. For details, see: [nN20105181] ($1=$1.00 Canadian) (Reporting by Jonathan Spicer; Editing by Peter Galloway)