May 30, 2008 / 8:49 PM / 9 years ago

UPDATE 3-Toronto stocks boosted by robust resources

3 Min Read

(Updates closing numbers, adds details)

*Index ends almost 1 percent higher

*Resource shares support rise as commodities prices climb

*Financials end higher after week of bank results

TORONTO, May 30 (Reuters) - The Toronto Stock Exchange's main index pushed almost 1 percent higher on Friday as it rode the strength of resource issues, which benefited from firm commodity prices.

Energy companies got a boost as crude finished a see-saw session higher. Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO) gained C$1.99, or 2.1 percent, to C$97.24, while Imperial Oil (IMO.TO) rose C$1.05, or 1.9 percent, to C$57.75.

The oil and gas group added 1.4 percent overall, while the resource-laden materials sector pushed up 2.4 percent with help from an advance in precious metals prices.

Agnico-Eagle Mines (AEM.TO) climbed C$2.39, or 3.5 percent, to C$70.35, and fertilizer company Potash Corp of Saskatchewan (POT.TO) was up C$2.75, or 1.4 percent, at C$197.33.

The S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE closed 137.56 points, or 0.94 percent, to 14,714.73 with six of its 10 main sectors in an upswing. The benchmark had briefly surged more than 200 points in the late afternoon, before paring gains.

The financial sector contributed a lift of 0.5 percent following a bout of corporate results from the major banks through the week.

Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD.TO) rose C$1.94, or 2.8 percent, to C$71.89, and National Bank of Canada (NA.TO) gained C$1.25, or 2.4 percent, to C$54.33.

On the downside, the technology group gave up 1.2 percent, with Celestica (CLS.TO) down 58 Canadian cents, or 6.2 percent, at C$8.78.

The market largely ignored data that showed Canada's economy shrank unexpectedly in the first quarter for the first time in five years. The contraction could leave open the possibility of additional Bank of Canada interest rate cuts. ($1=$0.99 Canadian) (Reporting by Leah Schnurr; Editing by Peter Galloway)

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