Toronto stocks spike up on resources and RIM

Fri Dec 21, 2007 5:22pm EST
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TORONTO (Reuters) - The Toronto Stock Exchange's main index closed strongly higher on Friday in a tech and resource-fuelled rally in which Research In Motion soared after posting impressive results.

BlackBerry-maker RIM RIM.TO was the net gain leader a day after the company reported that its third-quarter profit more than doubled as it pushed into the consumer market.

RIM raced ahead C$11.05, or 10.4 percent, to C$117.57 and helped pull the tech sector up 2.7 percent. Also in the sector, Celestica Inc CLS.TO rose 16 Canadian cents, or 2.8 percent, to C$5.85.

An advance in gold prices helped nearly all of the index's gold producers higher, while the materials group added 3.7 percent. Barrick Gold ABX.TO rose C$1.22, or 3.3 percent, to C$38.62, and Kinross Gold K.TO was up C$1.54, or 9.4 percent, at C$17.99.

Oil and gas shares climbed 1 percent, taking a cue from crude prices, which rose after a report showing a jump in personal spending in the United States calmed worries over the state of the U.S. economy.

Imperial Oil IMO.TO was up C$1.64, or 3.1 percent, at C$54.08, and Suncor Energy SU.TO rose C$1.33, or 1.3 percent, to C$106.06.

Overall, the S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE closed up 189.08 points, or 1.41 percent, at 13,596.09 with all but one of the TSX's 10 main sectors in positive territory. Health care was the only sector on the downside, dipping 0.4 percent.

The index was still down 0.6 percent on the week.

Banking shares managed a slight 0.1 percent gain, as financials south of the border advanced after a Wall Street Journal report that U.S. investment bank Merrill Lynch & Co Inc MER.N may get up to a $5 billion capital injection from a Singapore state investor.

Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce CM.TO gained 84 Canadian cents, or 1.2 percent, to C$71.35. But Coventree Inc COF.TO slumped 28 Canadian cents, or 29.2 percent, to 68 Canadian cents after the finance firm said its capital markets business "is no longer viable" due to the disruption in the asset-backed commercial paper market.

(Reporting by Leah Schnurr; Editing by Peter Galloway)

<p>A Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) logo is seen in Toronto November 9, 2007. REUTERS/Mark Blinch</p>