August 28, 2008 / 8:51 PM / 11 years ago

UPDATE 2-Toronto stocks rally along with financials

*TSX climbs 1.6 percent as banks lead

*TD jumps 5.4 percent after it raises dividend

*Lower oil prices boost wider market (Updates closing numbers, adds details, quotes)

TORONTO, Aug 28 (Reuters) - The Toronto Stock Exchange’s main index powered to its second triple-digit gain in a row on Thursday as major banks climbed after releasing results that were not as bad as some analysts feared.

Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD.TO) was the biggest gainer by weight after it boosted its dividend, the only Canadian bank to do so this quarter.

Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO), the country’s biggest bank, also led the way up after it beat market expectations and took lower writedowns than many analysts had anticipated.

TD rose 5.4 percent to C$62.56, while Royal jumped 6.3 percent to C$48.13. The sector rallied 4.2 percent. See: [ID:nN27481500]

“There’s a signal there for the market that people are putting a lot of this financial crisis behind them, finally,” said Lex Kerkovius, senior research analyst at McLean & Partners Wealth Management Ltd. in Calgary.

The S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE closed up 219.83 points, or 1.62 percent, at 13,750.48.

Bay Street was also pushed higher by data out of the United States that showed the economy grew more quickly than first thought, at a 3.3 percent annual rate in the second quarter. See: [ID:nN28278433]

A more than $2 drop in oil prices also helped bring the broader market up, easing anxiety over the impact of high energy prices on business and consumer spending.

Oil settled down at $115.59 a barrel after the U.S. government and the International Energy Agency said emergency stockpiles will be released if Tropical Storm Gustav interrupts U.S. oil production.

The drop trimmed Toronto’s energy group by 0.2 percent, making it the only sector to fall. Canadian Oil Sands Trust COS_u.TO slipped 2.1 percent to C$51.21. ($1=$1.05 Canadian) (Reporting by Leah Schnurr; Editing by Jeffrey Jones)

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