February 9, 2010 / 10:17 PM / 9 years ago

CANADA STOCKS-TSX rises on hopes for Greek aid, commodities

 * TSX up 158.94 points, or 1.43 pct, at 11,274.24
 * Materials, up 4.1 percent, lead way higher
 * Greece bailout speculation spurs rebound  (Adds details, quote)
 By Jennifer Kwan
 TORONTO, Feb 9 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index rallied on Tuesday as commodity prices got a lift from a weak U.S. dollar and investors sought riskier assets on speculation that a rescue plan was in the works for Greece’s debt problems.
 Barrick Gold Corp (ABX.TO) topped the list of gainers, rising 3.5 percent to C$38.35, while Potash Corp of Saskatchewan POT.TO was up 3.4 percent at C$113.10. Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO) climbed 1.4 percent to C$53.81.
 Stock markets were boosted by speculation that a special European Union summit, scheduled for later in the week, would introduce initiatives to help fix Greece’s debt woes.
 A senior German coalition source said on Tuesday that European governments have agreed in principle to help heavily indebted Greece. [ID:nSGE61801C] [MKTS/GLOB]
 People are “less stressed about sovereign debt issues,” and that was the impetus that helped drive a quick push up in the market, said Paul Harris, portfolio manager at Avenue Investment Management.
 “There was some news with the EU dealing with Greece and that sort of helped ease some pain.”
 The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE ended the day 158.94 points, or 1.43 percent, higher at 11,274.24, with eight of its 10 main groups rising. The materials sector, home to fertilizer and mining companies, rose 4.1 percent, while oil and gas shares climbed 0.9 percent.
 The outlook for smoother euro zone waters fueled investors’ appetite for risk, pressuring the U.S. dollar and boosting commodity prices, with gold rising above $1,070 an ounce and oil topping $73 a barrel. [GOL/] [O/R]
 Suncor Energy (SU.TO) rose 1.8 percent to C$31.85, while Goldcorp (G.TO) gained 4 percent to C$38.34.
 Fertilizer producer Agrium AGU.TO rose 4.4 percent to C$64.77 after it reported a weaker fourth-quarter profit but said it expected increased shipments to boost 2010 results. [ID:nN09157157]
 Teck Resources TCKb.TO, the country’s largest base metals miner, rose 5.1 percent to C$36.27 after it said it returned to profit in the fourth quarter. [ID:nN08210504]
 The blue chip S&P/TSX 60 index .TSE60 closed 9.99 points, or 1.54 percent, higher at 659.78.
 ($1=$1.07 Canadian)  (Reporting by Jennifer Kwan; editing by Peter Galloway)                                       

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