CANADA STOCKS-TSX jumps to a 17-month high as oil surges

(Adds portfolio manager quotes, details on sectors and index’s performance and updates prices)

* TSX closes up 175.84 points, or 1.18 percent, at 15,039.87

* Index posts its highest close since June 3, 2015

* Eight of the TSX’s 10 main groups move higher

By Fergal Smith

TORONTO, Nov 21 (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index jumped to a 17-month high on Monday, led by a more than 3 percent gain for its energy sector as oil rallied ahead of an OPEC meeting next week.

U.S. crude oil futures settled nearly 4 percent higher at $47.49 a barrel, bolstered by growing conviction that major oil producing countries would agree next week to limit output.

The most influential movers on the index included Suncor Energy Inc, which rose 2.4 percent to C$42.80, and Canadian Natural Resources Ltd, up 2.3 percent to C$44.08.

Financials, industrials and materials stocks also gained ground.

“Investors are looking for those stocks that will do relatively well in a (Donald) Trump administration-led economy,” said Irwin Michael, portfolio manager at ABC Funds.

U.S. President-elect Trump has proposed infrastructure spending, tax cuts and deregulation of banks, policies seen by investors as business-friendly. He met with a stream of Cabinet hopefuls at his Manhattan office tower on Monday.

“If he (Trump) does pick people who have a lot of credibility for his cabinet, such as (2012 Republican presidential nominee) Mitt Romney, the market will be probably quite enthused,” Michael said.

The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index closed up 175.84 points, or 1.18 percent, at 15,039.87, its highest since June 3, 2015.

The index has rallied 30 percent since January, helped by a partial rebound in oil prices.

Royal Bank of Canada rose 1.9 percent to C$88.95, while the overall financials group advanced 0.8 percent.

Industrials climbed 1.1 percent, led by gains for railroad stocks, while the materials group, which includes precious and base metals miners and fertilizer companies, added 1.7 percent, as gold and copper prices both pushed higher. .

Copper producer First Quantum Minerals Ltd surged more than 7 percent to C$14.80 as copper led metals higher on expectations of improving appetite from top consumer China.

Just two of the index’s 10 main groups ended lower, with health care falling nearly 1 percent and telecoms dipping 0.2 percent.

Shares in TransAlta Corp, the country’s largest operator of coal-fired plants, declined 0.9 percent to C$5.57.

Canada announced on Monday it will virtually eliminate the use of traditional coal-fired electricity by 2030.

Canadian wholesale trade unexpectedly fell 1.2 percent in September from August, dropping for the first time in six months after a series of strong gains. (Reporting by Alastair Sharp; Editing by Dan Grebler and Chris Reese)