January 30, 2015 / 12:42 PM / in 4 years

TSX rises as oil and gold shares rally

TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index edged higher on Friday as a jump in oil and bullion prices pushed up gold-mining and energy shares, overcoming a decline in financial stocks following sluggish U.S. economic data.

A man walks past an old Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) sign in Toronto, June 23, 2014. REUTERS/Mark Blinch

U.S. economic growth slowed in the fourth quarter, following two quarters of strong growth, government data showed.

A 13.1 percent drop in Eldorado Gold (ELD.TO) also weighed on the market. The stock fell after Greece’s new left-wing government said it is firmly opposed to the Canadian company’s plan for a gold mine in the country.

The benchmark TSX index declined over the week but ended January slightly higher. Market volatility shot up during the month.

“The turn in sentiment for the TSX has been quite sharp in the last six months. I really don’t see that improving,” said Elvis Picardo, strategist and vice president of research at Global Securities in Vancouver.

“It’s been quite a few years since we experienced this level of volatility, and I daresay that it’s going to continue,” he added.

The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE closed up 36.20 points, or 0.25 percent, at 14,673.48. Five of the 10 main sectors on the index were higher.

Financials, the index’s most heavily weighted sector, dropped 2.2 percent. Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO) shed 3.2 percent to C$71.74, and Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD.TO) gave back 2 percent to C$50.60.

The gold-mining sector advanced 4.1 percent, helped by a jump in the bullion price. Barrick Gold Corp (ABX.TO) rose 4.9 percent to C$16.45 and Goldcorp Inc (G.TO) was up 4.1 percent at C$30.69.

Shares of energy producers climbed 4.7 percent as U.S. crude oil prices showed robust gains. In the group, Canadian Natural Resources Ltd (CNQ.TO) added 5.4 percent to C$36.84.

Shares of Canadian Oil Sands Ltd COS.TO shot up 20.6 percent to C$7.85, after the company said it is taking aggressive action to deal with the recent plunge in oil prices.

Editing by Nick Zieminski; and Peter Galloway

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