3 Min Read
(Adds quotes, details on Valeant, updates prices)
* TSX ends up 62.56 points, or 0.49 percent, at 12,860.35
* Nine of the TSX's 10 main groups rise
By Fergal Smith
TORONTO, Feb 29 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index rose on Monday as commodity market gains drove resource stocks higher, while Valeant Pharmaceuticals International dragged on news it is under investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission.
U.S. crude prices rose nearly 3 percent to settle at $33.75 a barrel after China moved to boost its slowing economy and Saudi Arabia pledged to work with other crude producers to limit market volatility.
"More stable and more certain growth in China will certainly propel a more stable and stronger TSX (Toronto Stock Exchange)," said Stan Wong, director & portfolio manager at Scotia Wealth Management.
Canadian Natural Resources Ltd gained 3.3 percent to C$28.28, while Enbridge Inc was up 1.7 percent at C$47.79. The energy group climbed 2 percent.
Gold rose more than 1 percent, logging its best monthly performance in four years as turmoil in wider markets increased its safe-haven appeal.
Barrick Gold Corp rose 2.9 percent to C$18.80, while Goldcorp Inc advanced 3.8 percent to C$19.44.
The materials group, which includes precious and base metals miners and fertilizer companies, added 1.9 percent.
The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index rose 62.56 points, or 0.49 percent, to 12,860.35. Nine of the index's 10 main groups ended higher.
Advancing issues outnumbered declining ones by 169 to 65, for a 2.60-to-1 ratio on the upside.
The financials group rose 0.6 percent, including a 1.1 percent gain for Royal Bank of Canada to C$69.07.
The higher oil price helps financials because of concern about loan losses in the energy sector, said Wong.
The most influential weight on the index by far was Valeant, which tumbled nearly 14 percent to C$94.49 after news the company is under investigation by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in a previously undisclosed probe.
The healthcare sector fell 3.9 percent. (Additional reporting by Alastair Sharp; Editing by W Simon and James Dalgleish)