CANADA STOCKS-TSX ekes out small gain on banks, golds

Tue Jan 26, 2010 4:58pm EST
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* TSX up 0.06 percent at 11,361.19

* Energy sector weighs as crude retreats (Updates with analyst quotes)

By Ka Yan Ng

TORONTO, Jan 26 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index eked out a small gain on Tuesday after rebounding from a near seven-week low as sagging energy shares were offset by renewed strength in golds and financials.

A turnaround in banking stocks helped lead the small advance, with Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO: Quote) up 1.25 percent at C$53.37 and by Bank of Montreal (BMO.TO: Quote) ahead 1.4 percent at C$53.38. The country's other three big banks also finished in positive territory, helping the financials group rise 0.42 percent.

Gold producers were also a key support as the precious metal rallied from a session low to finish at just under $1,100 an ounce. Barrick Gold (ABX.TO: Quote) was among the major gainers, up 0.8 percent at C$38.38.

But energy issues continued to be key downside movers, in concert with a weaker price of crude oil, which at one point dipped below $74 a barrel [ID:nN26116773]. EnCana (ECA.TO: Quote) led the heavyweight decliners with a 1.77 percent fall to C$33.76.

The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE finished up 6.68 points, or 0.06 percent, at 11,361.19.

The TSX swung to to its lowest level since Dec. 9 on concerns over the economic recovery after China's clampdown on lending raised doubts about the robustness of Chinese demand for commodities such as oil.   Continued...