CANADA STOCKS-TSX gains as gold miners shine, Barrick jumps
* TSX up 33.71 points, or 0.25 percent, at 13,346.49 * Gold miners lead push as Barrick rises 5 pct * Narrowing crude spread helps Canadian oil companies By Alastair Sharp TORONTO, Dec 10 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index rose on Tuesday, helped by a surge in major gold miners as the price of bullion hit a three-week high, while energy companies also aided the gain. Barrick Gold Corp jumped 5.4 percent to C$17.90 and Goldcorp Inc added 3 percent to C$23, as investors scrambled to cover bets that the price of gold would fall. Barrick, whose stock has slumped in the last two years, recently completed a $3 billion equity offering and announced a shake up within in its boardroom, as it attempts to steady itself following a slew of missteps. The strategic moves have prompted investors to take a fresh look at the world's largest gold producer. "You've already seen some action by the new management at Barrick which has been viewed favorably by the market," said Gavin Graham, chief strategy officer at Integris Pension Management Corp. "Looking at this stock, it's probably as cheap as it's been in relation to the price of gold in the last 20 years." Graham said stock prices in the sector could grow another 40 or 50 percent if the price of gold rises to $1,400 or $1,500 an ounce. It is currently trading at around $1,260. Gold miners are heavily represented on the Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index, which was up 33.71 points, or 0.25 percent, at 13,346.49 by mid-morning. Several energy companies also made gains, with Suncor Energy Inc up 0.7 percent at C$36.08 and Talisman Energy Inc adding 1.5 percent to C$12.59. The spread between WTI and Brent crude narrowed as TransCanada Corp began filling a major pipeline that will transport oil from the U.S. Midwest to the Gulf.
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