CANADA STOCKS-TSX rises as Trump says close to 'big' China deal

Dec 12 (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index rose on Thursday, led by a jump in energy shares, after U.S. President Donald Trump tweeted saying Washington and Beijing were getting “very close” to a trade deal.

* The energy sector climbed 1.8% as U.S. crude prices were up 1.4% a barrel, while Brent crude added 1.5%.

* “Getting VERY close to a BIG DEAL with China. They want it, and so do we,” Trump posted on Twitter, just days before new U.S. tariffs on Chinese imports were due to be imposed.

* Adding to the upbeat mood was a report that said U.S. negotiators have offered to cut existing tariffs by as much as half on roughly $360 billion of Chinese-made goods while also offering to cancel the fresh round of levies set to take effect on Dec. 15.

* At 9:53 a.m. ET (1453 GMT), the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index was up 58.33 points, or 0.34%, at 16,997.94.

* Bausch Health Companies Inc, among the top percentage gainers on the TSX, rose 4.6% after JP Morgan upgraded the stock to “overweight”.

* Silvercorp Metals Inc fell 1.9%, the most on the TSX.

* The most heavily traded shares by volume were Canadian Natural Resources Ltd, BCE Inc, and Encana Corp.

* The TSX posted six new 52-week highs and no new low.

* Across all Canadian issues there were 36 new 52-week highs and eight new lows, with total volume of 46.38 million shares.

* On the TSX, 151 issues were higher, while 74 issues declined for a 2.04-to-1 ratio favoring gainers, with 26.76 million shares traded. (Reporting by Arjun Panchadar in Bengaluru; Editing by Amy Caren Daniel)