* TSX rises 0.97 percent to end at 11,200.17
* Energy, financial fight off gold drag (Updates to close)
By Ka Yan Ng
TORONTO, July 6 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index ended higher on Tuesday, bouncing back from its lowest close in eight months the day before, as calmer sentiment prevailed after several weeks of decline, spurring a rally in the key energy and financial groups.
Gains on the index fizzled late in the session as weakness in the materials sector accelerated, and nearly put the index into negative territory. But strong gains in the energy and financial sectors fought off the drag from big gold names.
On the leaderboard, Toronto-Dominion Bank TD.TO added 3.28 percent to C$70.18, and Royal Bank of Canada RY.TO gained 2.39 percent to C$52.37. Teck Resources TCKb.TO jumped 4.66 percent to C$31.68, while Canadian Natural Resources CNQ.TO climbed 2.35 percent to C$34.81. Suncor Energy SU.TO rose 1.56 percent to C$31.23.
Apart from scooping up bargains on recently sold-off stocks, investors were relieved by signs of strength in Europe’s banking system and a rally in world equity markets. Commodity prices were also firmer during the session.
“We saw pretty much across the board the assets that traders like to buy when they’re feeling comfortable were all moving up, like crude oil, natural gas, and the Canadian dollar,” said Aaron Fennell, senior markets strategist at Lind-Waldock.
“But, at the end of the day, there wasn’t any reason to drive the markets higher so they didn’t manage to gain any momentum. They just simply stopped the freefall in the stock market today.”
The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE advanced 107.67 points, or 0.97 percent, to end at 11,200.17. On Monday, the index closed at its weakest level since Nov. 4, 2009.
Eight of the index’s 10 main groups were higher.
Key decliners were mostly gold issues, part of the materials group, which fell 0.77 percent. Goldcorp G.TO lost 1.7 percent at C$42.85, while Kinross Gold K.TO was down 3.1 percent at C$16.87.
$1=$1.0545 Canadian Reporting by Ka Yan Ng; editing by Rob Wilson