Aug 8 (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index rose on Thursday as crude prices jumped about 2% and pushed the energy sector higher.
* Market sentiment was also helped by better-than-expected trade data from China and a steadying of its currency offered some comfort to investors rattled by an escalation in trade tensions and signals pointing to a recession.
* Oil jumped more than $1 a barrel on Thursday due to expectations that falling prices may lead to production cuts and helped the energy sector gain 1.1%.
* The materials sector, down 0.5%, was the only major sector trading lower, as gold prices slipped.
* At 9:38 a.m. ET (13:38 GMT), the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index was up 65.31 points, or 0.4%, at 16,330.53.
* On the TSX, 166 issues were higher, while 66 issues declined for a 2.52-to-1 ratio favouring gainers, with 19.01 million shares traded.
* The largest percentage gainer on the TSX was Inter Pipeline Ltd, which jumped 8.9%, followed by TMX Group Limited, up 5.5%.
* Iamgold Corp plunged 13.6%, the most on the TSX, after Credit Suisse downgraded its shares to “neutral” from “outperform”.
* The second-biggest decliner was Ag Growth International Inc, down 5.5%, after the seed and fertilizer maker reported quarterly results.
* The most heavily traded shares by volume were Inter Pipeline Ltd, B2gold Corp, and Encana Corp .
* The TSX posted six new 52-week highs and one new low.
* Across all Canadian issues, there were 19 new 52-week highs and seven new lows, with total volume of 29.34 million shares. (Reporting by Amy Caren Daniel in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel)