May 22, 2009 / 3:01 PM / 10 years ago

CANADA STOCKS-TSX rises as commodities show strength

* TSX up 0.92 percent at 10,041.60

* Materials gain 2.4 percent as metal prices firm

* Volumes expected to be thin ahead of U.S. holiday (Adds details, quote)

By Jennifer Kwan

TORONTO, May 22 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index rose nearly 1 percent on Friday morning, rebounding from a 2.8 percent tumble in the previous session, as resource issues climbed on firm commodity prices.

The materials group, home to miners and fertilizer companies, gained 2.4 percent and led the TSX higher. The price of gold was steady, while industrial metals were mostly higher on the back of a weaker U.S. dollar and rising equity markets. [ID:nLM456762]

Barrick Gold (ABX.TO) rose 2.8 percent to C$43.16, while Teck Resources TCKb.TO climbed 4 percent to C$15.74.

Potash Corp of Saskatchewan POT.TO was up 3.5 percent at C$128.51 while Agrium Inc AGU.TO rose 3.9 percent to C$57.65, following an upgrade by Citigroup. [ID:nWNAB2865]

The energy sector added 1 percent even though the price of oil CLc1 was largely flat, retreating from earlier strength in choppy trade. [ID:nN22363696]

At 10:37 a.m. (1437 GMT), the S&P/TSX composite index <.GSPTSE was up 92.01 points, or 0.92 percent, at 10,041.60, with eight of its 10 main groups higher.

Volumes are expected to be light ahead of the U.S. Memorial Day holiday on Monday.

“People may not be willing to make a bet one way or another,” said Ian Nakamoto, director of research at MacDougall, MacDougall & MacTier.

Market jitters were calmed on Friday after Moody’s Investors Service said it was comfortable with its triple-A sovereign rating on the United States, though the rating was not guaranteed forever. [ID:nN21313143]

Fears grew after Standard & Poor’s lowered its ratings outlook for Britain this week, fueling jitters that Washington’s soaring deficit could lead to a credit rating downgrade for the United States. [ID:nLL180301]

The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development said the global economy had come out of “free fall”, offering hope of a recovery late this year to investors and markets unnerved by rising U.S. government debt. [ID:nLM397988]

Broadly, the market is still struggling with whether the recent rally is a sign of a recovery.

“It strikes me that we’re in a trading range here,” said Nakamoto. “I think there’s still a lot of uncertainty out there.”

Friday’s rise follows a drop of 2.8 percent on Thursday, as oil retreated from six-month highs, pulling down energy issues. Earlier in the week, the TSX rallied on the back of optimism for a global economic recovery. The index is up about 30 percent from its March lows.

$1=$1.13 Canadian Reporting by Jennifer Kwan; editing by Rob Wilson

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