CANADA STOCKS-Energy shares power TSX to higher close

Tue Sep 22, 2009 5:03pm EDT
 
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 * TSX rises 161.12 points to 11,585.73
 * Ends just shy of last week's 11-month high
 * Energy shares, up 1.93 pct, power rally
 (Adds details, comments and official numbers)
 By Frank Pingue
 TORONTO, Sept 22 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index
closed more than 1 percent higher on Tuesday as a rally in oil
prices lit a fire under energy shares and left the index just
shy of its highest level in nearly a year.
 The gain in the index's energy sector was powered by
Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO: Quote), which rose 3.7 percent to
C$76.64, followed by shares of Suncor Energy (SU.TO: Quote), up 2
percent at C$39.40.
 "It's really sort of the commodity story combined a little
with the fact that markets worldwide are better," said Levente
Mady, market strategist at Union Securities in Vancouver.
 "And while you can certainly say things are overbought at
this point, until you see kind of a change in character in the
market it's difficult to fight city hall."
 The S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE ended up 161.12
points, or 1.41 percent, at 11,585.73. That was just 28 points
shy of topping the 11-month high it reached last week.
 Seven of the 10 TSX sectors ended higher, with industrials,
information technology and healthcare the only sectors ending
in lower territory.
 The TSX shrugged off data that showed Canadian retail sales
unexpectedly fell 0.6 percent in July from June after two
months of robust gains. [ID:nN22339158]
 The index's materials sector, home to gold-mining shares,
was also a key driver of the market's gain as gold prices rose
to within striking distance of a recent 18-month high. [GOL/]
 That helped boost shares of Barrick Gold Corp (ABX.TO: Quote) 2.4
percent to C$40.25, while Goldcorp (G.TO: Quote) rallied 1.8 percent
to C$44.82.
 Mady said the TSX could extend its rally into Wednesday's
session but might take a breather around mid-afternoon when the
U.S. Federal Reserve's Federal Open Market Committee makes an
announcement. The Fed is widely expected to hold interest rates
where they are, near zero percent.
 Bombardier Inc (BBDb.TO: Quote) shares helped keep the latest TSX
rally in check as the company said it would make a decision
within the next few weeks on production cuts in its commercial
aircraft division. [ID:N22158670] Bombardier ended the session
down 1.7 percent at C$4.59
 ($1=$1.07 Canadian)
 (Editing by Peter Galloway)