TSX notches biggest gain in six weeks as banks, miners gain

TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index posted its biggest gain in more than six weeks on Monday as heavyweight banking stocks bounced back from a recent slip and several industrial miners also gained as Chinese data showed surprising growth.

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

The heavyweight financials group jumped 1.4 percent as bond yields recovered somewhat from multi-month lows, with Toronto-Dominion Bank TD.TO up 2.1 percent at C$66.20 and Bank of Nova Scotia BNS.TO adding 1.5 percent to C$77.14.

“We’re getting a little bit of a rebound as investor focus shifts at least slightly away from some of the geopolitical worries and back to what’s likely to be the headliner of the week, which is earnings reports,” said Craig Fehr, Canadian market strategist at Edward Jones in St. Louis, Missouri.

The most influential movers on the index also included Teck Resources Ltd TECKb.TO, which rose 1.6 percent to C$29.80, and Lundin Mining Corp LUN.TO, up 1.5 percent to C$7.45.

The base metal miners gains came as China’s economy grew faster than expected in the first quarter as industrial output grew by the most in over two years.

The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE ended up 149.41 points, or 0.96 percent, at 15,684.89.

That was its biggest one-day gain since March 1.

Nine of its 10 main sectors gained, with advancers outnumbering decliners by 2.5-to-1.

The index fell on Thursday to its lowest level in more than two weeks. The market was closed on Friday.

Gold miners weighed as the precious metal came off a five-month high, with Alamos Gold Inc AGI.TO falling 1.8 percent to C$10.75 and B2Gold Corp BTO.TO down 3.1 percent at C$3.7 percent.

The materials group, which includes precious and base metals miners and fertilizer companies, was barely higher overall.

Marijuana stocks fell from last week's highs following the introduction of legislation to legalize its recreational use, with Canopy Growth Corp WEED.TO down 3.2 percent at C$9.61 and OrganiGram Holdings Inc OGI.V off 5.7 percent at C$2.66.

The energy group climbed 1.2 percent even as oil prices slipped, with pipeline company Enbridge Inc ENB.TO up 0.9 percent to C$56.77 and Suncor Energy Inc SU.TO adding 1.4 percent to C$41.26.

Reporting by Alastair Sharp; Editing by Bernard Orr and Sandra Maler