* TSX up 42.59 points at 9,385.96
* Energy shares up 1 percent and lead early gain
* Royal Bank of Canada charge tempers move higher (Adds details and comments)
TORONTO, April 17 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index was higher on Friday morning as a rise in the price of oil sparked a rally in energy shares, but the index’s move was tempered by news of a charge at Canada’s biggest bank.
The energy sector rose 1 percent and was responsible for the lion’s share of the TSX’s gain as the price of oil, a key Canadian commodity and export, held above $50 a barrel.
Shares of EnCana Corp ECA.TO were up 1.4 percent at C$55.06, while Suncor Energy SU.TO followed with a gain of 1 percent to C$31.00.
“The strength in the overall market amazes me because people keep talking about a pullback, but whenever there is a pullback people have stepped in to buy,” said Ian Nakamoto, director of research at MacDougall, MacDougall & MacTier.
The TSX remains about 25 percent above the five-year low it hit in early March, which has left many experts calling for a some retracement, but that has yet to come.
Even an announcement late on Thursday by Royal Bank of Canada RY.TO that it would take a charge of roughly C$1.03 billion in the second quarter did not appear to have any significant impact on the index. [ID:nN16291534]
Shares of Royal Bank dropped 0.5 percent to C$42.16, but the index’s heavily weighted financial sector managed to stay up 0.23 percent.
At 10:05 a.m. (1405 GMT), the S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE was up 42.59 points, or 0.46 percent, at 9,385.96.
Eight of the TSX’s 10 sectors were higher.
Data released before the index open showed Canada’s annual inflation rate slowed to 1.2 percent in March from 1.4 percent in February, but the core rate that is closely watched by the central bank unexpectedly rose to 2 percent. [ID:nN17500487]
The data did not have any noticeable impact on the market.
$1=$1.21 Canadian Editing by Peter Galloway