TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index rose on Monday, led by financials and resource stocks as commodity prices climbed and investors bet that the Federal Reserve would hold U.S. interest rates steady later this week.
Gains for the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE followed a 0.6 percent loss last week, which was its fourth negative week in five after having rebounded more than 25 percent from a three-year low in January.
The loss of momentum for the index is due to uncertainty around what the Fed will do and recent weakness in commodity prices, said Bryden Teich, portfolio manager at Avenue Investment Management.
“You do have to take a bit of a pause and that is healthy for the market,” Teich added.
One of the most influential movers on the index was Suncor Energy Inc SU.TO, which rose 0.7 percent to C$34.50, while the overall energy group firmed 0.2 percent.
U.S. crude oil futures CLc1 settled up 27 cents at $43.30 a barrel after Venezuela’s president said that OPEC members and other major oil producers could agree to a deal to freeze output, and as clashes in Libya disrupted attempts to restart crude exports from key ports. [O/R]
Financials rose 0.3 percent, led by a 0.9 percent advance in the shares of Manulife Financial Corp MFC.TO to C$18.19, while Brookfield Asset Management Inc BAMa.TO was up 0.7 percent at C$43.70.
The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE closed up 45.54 points, or 0.32 percent, at 14,496.23. The index touched its highest intraday level since Sept. 12 at 14,557.48.
Stronger domestic growth and higher oil prices would help the index move another leg higher, Teich said.
All of the index’s 10 main groups ended higher.
The materials group, which includes precious and base metals miners and fertilizer companies, added 0.6 percent, with gold-focused royalty and stream company Franco Nevada Corp FNV.TO rising 1.2 percent to C$93.86.
Spot gold XAU= firmed 0.2 percent.
Industrials edged 0.1 percent higher, helped by a 1.9 percent gain for waste management company Waste Connections Inc WCN.TO to C$99.65.
All issues are on the table in negotiations with General Motors Co GM.N, the head of its main Canadian autoworkers union said, as the union pushed to secure new investment as part of a labor contract ahead of a midnight strike deadline.
Additional reporting by Alastair Sharp; Editing by Bill Trott and Peter Cooney