March 13, 2009 / 8:35 PM / 9 years ago

CANADA STOCKS-Toronto index carried higher by gold-mining shares

* Index rises 21.12 points to 8,303.39

* Gold-mining shares behind latest TSX gain

* TSX ends week with gain of 9.4 percent (Adds details, comments and official numbers)

By Frank Pingue

TORONTO, March 13 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index ended a volatile session with a slight gain on Friday as shares of gold-miners rallied around higher bullion while financials continued to take comfort on news that the U.S. banking sector is finding stability.

After a massive three-day rally where the index surged 9.5 percent, investors decided to take their foot off the gas pedal in the latest session. But a push higher by gold-mining stocks was enough to carry the overall index a slim gain.

Goldcorp G.TO headlined the latest TSX gain as its shares rose 3.7 percent to close at C$37.84, followed by Barrick Gold ABX.TO, whose shares ended up 2.6 percent at C$37.89.

The gain paled in comparison to the triple-digit runs made in the last three sessions, but it was enough to give the index its first four-session streak of higher closes since Feb. 9.

“We didn’t see a continuation of the strength from earlier in the week,” said Kate Warne, Canadian market strategist at Edward Jones in St. Louis, Missouri.

“But the good news is we did not see a return to a lot more negative sentiment which easily could have happened because I don’t think the underlying fundamentals have changed enough to be confident that people are going to stay positive.”

The higher close followed Canadian data that showed the economy shed a bigger-than-expected 82,600 jobs in February, which was the latest reminder that the domestic economy is deteriorating. [ID:nN13433946]

The S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE closed up 21.12 points, or 0.26 percent, at 8,303.39. During the session it rallied as much as 0.8 percent and dropped as much as 1.2 percent.

For the week, the index rose 9.4 percent.

$1=$1.27 Canadian Editing by Jeffrey Hodgson

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