CANADA STOCKS-TSX drops but ends May with a big gain

Fri May 29, 2009 5:08pm EDT
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* TSX ends down 0.21 percent at 10,370.07

* Up 3.8 percent on the week

* Records steepest monthly rise since December 1999

* RBC reports quarterly loss; shares drop 4 pct (Adds details, quote)

By Jennifer Kwan

TORONTO, May 29 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index ended lower on Friday, weighed down by energy issues and a quarterly loss reported by Royal Bank of Canada RY.TO.

But on the week the index gained 3.8 percent and for May it logged its steepest monthly climb in nearly 10 years, driven up by investor optimism that the global economy is starting to climb out of recession.

In volatile action on Friday, the TSX shot up nearly 1 percent shortly after the open, but then dropped into negative territory to end the day down on a late day selloff in energy shares, which fell 0.44 percent.

Weighing on the market was Royal Bank of Canada RY.TO, which notched its first quarterly loss since 1993 as it wrote down the value of its U.S. assets and set aside nearly C$1 billion to cover bad loans, sending shares 4 percent lower to C$43.70. [ID:nN25399893]   Continued...