TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index gained modestly on Friday, rising 0.3 percent on the week, as a jump in base metal miners overcame a drop in gold miners, which were hit by a one-month low in bullion prices.
A rise in heavily weighted financial stocks also helped the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE stay in the green, while losses in oil and gas shares weighed.
“The mining area is the one showing a little bit of get up and go today,” said John Kinsey, a portfolio manager at Caldwell Securities Ltd.
With iron ore prices bouncing off multiyear lows, Canada’s Labrador Iron Ore Royalty LIF.TO followed its larger global peers higher, up 7.5 percent at C$14.70.
“Some people may think enough is enough and try to put in a bottom here,” Kinsey said, referring to iron ore prices.
The most influential gainers on the index included First Quantum Minerals Ltd FM.TO, up 6 percent at C$17.54, and diversified miner Teck Resources Ltd TCKb.TO, which rose 6.3 percent to C$17.45.
The index’s overall materials sector was flat, however, as gold miners fell back. Bullion hit a one-month low as strength in global equities markets diverted interest from the precious metal. In the group, Goldcorp Inc G.TO fell 2.4 percent to C$23.14.
The benchmark index ended up 15.98 points, or 0.10 percent, at 15,408.33. Eight of its 10 main sectors gained.
“Global equity markets are trying to incorporate slower than expected global economic growth and earnings,” said Subodh Kumar, chief investment strategist at Subodh Kumar & Associates.
“Sentiment shifts quite a lot day to day ... I think that the markets are going back to looking at fundamentals, and fundamentals have not been quite as strong as people have hoped.”
West Fraser Timber Co Ltd WFT.TO was among the most influential gainers on the index, jumping 6.7 percent to C$64.65 as analysts cheered first quarter results that beat expectations.
Oil and gas shares pulled back broadly after a recent runup helped by signs of consolidation in the price of crude.
“Energy stocks have been very strong, they’ve all had a good run here. I think they were due for a pause,” Caldwell’s Kinsey said.
Additional reporting by Solarina Ho; Editing by Peter Galloway