* TSX up 57.25 points, or 0.38 percent, at 14,999.66
* Six of 10 main index sectors advance
* Suncor, Canadian Natural drive energy sector gains
By John Tilak
TORONTO, March 23 (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index advanced on Monday with shares of energy companies climbing on higher oil prices and miners getting a lift from stronger copper prices.
Commodity prices have been boosted by weakness in the U.S. dollar since a statement by the U.S. Federal Reserve last week that signaled a softer view on raising interest rates than some in the market had expected. Many commodities are priced in U.S. dollars, and a weaker dollar makes them more affordable to holders of other currencies.
Rebounding commodities helped the Toronto stock market’s benchmark index record a 1.4 percent gain last week. On Monday, Brent crude oil jumped 1.4 percent, and copper added more than 1 percent.
“The U.S. dollar is taking a breather, which is helping oil worldwide and other commodities,” said Victor Kuntzevitsky, associate at Northland Wealth Management.
“The fundamentals for energy and oil are still negative,” he added. “But in the short term, the U.S. dollar (weakness) should definitely benefit.”
The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index was up 57.25 points, or 0.38 percent, at 14,999.66. Six of the 10 main sectors on the index were higher.
Shares of oil producers advanced 1.8 percent. Suncor Energy Inc added 1.4 percent to C$35.94, and Canadian Natural Resources Ltd climbed 1.3 percent to C$37.70.
The materials sector, which includes mining stocks, was up 0.3 percent. Teck Resources Ltd gained 2.3 percent to C$19.32, and First Quantum Minerals Ltd was up 2.3 percent, at C$15.36.
$1=$1.25 Canadian Editing by Peter Galloway