April 24, 2017 / 2:45 PM / 8 months ago

CANADA STOCKS-TSX rises as banks jump after French election relief

(Adds details on specific stocks, updates prices)

* TSX up 78.69 points, or 0.5 percent, at 15,693.17

* Nine of the TSX’s 10 main groups move higher

TORONTO, April 24 (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index rose on Monday morning, boosted by solid gains for banking stocks as investors cheered domestic data and French election results that limited the risk of another core member leaving the European Union.

The financials group gained 1.4 percent after data showed domestic wholesale trade fell less than expected and the market’s favored candidate won the first round of the French election, reducing the risk of another Brexit-like shock.

Royal Bank of Canada rose 1.3 percent to C$95.81, Toronto-Dominion Bank advanced 1.3 percent to C$66.48 and Bank of Nova Scotia added 1.7 percent to C$78.15.

Insurer Manulife Financial Corp rose 3 percent to C$23.84 as U.S. and Canadian bond yields rose.

Home Capital Group Inc shares fell 2.8 percent to C$18.72 after the country’s biggest non-bank lender said founder and former Chief Executive Officer Gerald Soloway would step down from its board, days after regulators accused the company of making “materially misleading statements” to investors.

Home Capital’s shares had fallen 20.7 percent on Thursday but gained 8.7 percent on Friday.

At 10:10 a.m. EDT (1410 GMT), the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index was up 78.69 points, or 0.5 percent, at 15,693.17.

Nine of the index’s 10 main groups were in positive territory.

The index’s broader materials sector, which includes precious and base metal miners and fertilizer companies, lost 1.1 percent. A sharp fall in the price of gold following the French election weighed on Canada’s producers of the metal.

Barrick Gold Corp fell 2.1 percent to C$25.44, and Goldcorp Inc declined 2.9 percent to C$19.82. Barrick will report quarterly earnings after the bell, with Goldcorp due to follow on Wednesday.

Smaller producer Semafo Inc fell 18 percent to C$3.23, its lowest level in more than a year, after the gold miner reduced its production outlook for 2017.

The energy group was up 0.3 percent as oil prices steadied after last week’s sharp losses, while Precision Drilling Corp dropped 3.1 percent to C$5.65 after reporting a smaller-than-expected rise in revenue as the rates customers paid to hire rigs fell despite increased demand.

SNC-Lavalin Group Inc advanced 0.4 percent to C$54.46. The company won a contract of undisclosed value from Saudi Aramco for initial engineering and design work to expand the gas-oil separation plant of the Berri oilfield, industry sources said. (Reporting by Alastair Sharp; Editing by Lisa Von Ahn)

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