UPDATE 1-Toronto stocks lifted by resources, financials

Fri Dec 28, 2007 10:41am EST
 
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(Updates stock movement, adds detail, quotes)

TORONTO Dec 28 (Reuters) - The Toronto Stock Exchange's main index was off to a strong start on Friday morning, in a broad advance prompted by gains in resource shares amid firm gold and oil prices.

The materials group led the advance, gaining 1.2 percent, while the price of gold climbed to a one-month high on weakness in the U.S. dollar and international political tensions.

Potash Corp of Saskatchewan (POT.TO: Quote) added C$1.45, or 1 percent, to C$144.44, extending Thursday's advance.

The gold subsector rose 1.4 percent, with Barrick Gold (ABX.TO: Quote) up 90 Canadian cents, or 2.3 percent, at C$40.48.

The energy sector, the second largest on the index, was up 0.5 percent as oil advanced on a drop in U.S. fuel inventories and political uncertainty in Pakistan and Iraq.

Husky Energy HSE.TO rose 38 Canadian cents, or 0.9 percent, to C$43.99 and Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO: Quote) advanced 56 Canadian cents, or 0.8 percent, to C$71.66.

The S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE was up 80.23 points, or 0.59 percent, at 13,755.80 with eight of the 10 main groups in positive territory shortly after the opening bell.

The heavyweight financial sector also helped lift the index, rising 0.6 percent after a report said U.S. and European banks planned to raise capital by selling assets to shore up their capital.   Continued...