May 26, 2008 / 8:48 PM / 9 years ago

UPDATE 2-Toronto stocks get boost from oil, Talisman

(Updates closing numbers, add details, quotes)

*Index end slightly higher amid light volume

*Oils, materials edge higher, techs slide

*Talisman jumps after report of China interest

TORONTO, May 26 (Reuters) - The Toronto Stock Exchange’s main index ended slightly higher in light volume on Monday as the energy sector pushed up amid gains by oil and a report that Talisman Energy TLM.TO could be an acquisition target.

Shares of Talisman climbed C$1.51, or 6.5 percent, to C$24.70 following a newspaper report that Chinese oil firm CNOOC Ltd (0883.HK) was considering a bid for the Canadian company or some of its assets.

“Talisman in our view has been an undervalued company,” said Michael Sprung, president at Sprung & Co. Investment Counsel.

“We don’t find it surprising that people might be taking a look at it -- it’s got a very strong balance sheet, good properties and good prospects.”

Overall, the energy sector was up 0.5 percent, as oil rose to around $133 a barrel after an attack on a pipeline in Nigeria, while long-term supply concerns remained.

The S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE closed up 35.21 points, or 0.24 percent, at 14,758.57 after a day of light action as U.S. and U.K. markets were closed for holidays. All but two of the index’s 10 main sectors drifted higher.

Elsewhere in the oil patch, Imperial Oil (IMO.TO) added 23 Canadian cents, or 0.4 percent, to C$59.09, and Suncor Energy (SU.TO) rose 90 Canadian cents, or 1.3 percent, to C$71.24.

On the downside, the tech sector dipped 0.3 percent, with MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Ltd MDA.TO off 81 Canadian cents, or 1.9 percent, at C$40.88, and heavyweight Research In Motion RIM.TO sliding 74 Canadian cents, or 0.6 percent, to C$129.06.

The mining subindex also stumbled, falling 0.5 percent, but its larger materials group eked out a tiny gain of 0.02 percent with help from Potash Corp of Saskatchewan (POT.TO), which rose C$1.48, or 0.8 percent, to C$195.88. ($1=$0.99 Canadian) (Reporting by Leah Schnurr; editing by Rob Wilson)

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