CANADA STOCKS-Miners lift TSX to highest-ever close

Mon Jun 30, 2014 4:25pm EDT

* TSX up 51.76 points, or 0.34 percent, at 15,146.01
    * Eight of 10 main index sectors advance
    * Index records monthly, quarterly gains
    * Mining shares follow gold, copper prices higher

    By John Tilak
    TORONTO, June 30 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index hit
its highest-ever close on Monday as strength in the prices of
commodities such as bullion and copper helped drive up shares in
the materials sector.
    Investors appeared to shrug off government figures that
showed Canadian economic growth falling short of expectations in
April, hurt by lower oil and gas production. 
    The Toronto market ended June 3.7 percent higher, having
climbed in 11 of the last 12 months. The benchmark index also
recorded its fourth straight quarterly advance. These gains have
pushed the index near its all-time intraday high that it hit in
June 2008.
    "The TSX has finally caught up to where some of the other
markets have been in the past couple of years," said Philip
Petursson, managing director, portfolio advisory group, at
Manulife Asset Management.
    "It does set up for a little bit more enthusiasm for the
Canadian market," he added.
    The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
 closed up 51.76 points, or 0.34 percent, at 15,146.01.
    "It's another great month for the Toronto stock market. I
can't remember a run this good for this long," said Barry
Schwartz, vice president and portfolio manager at Baskin
Financial Services.
    "With low interest rates, a good outlook for profits and
companies swimming in cash, the earnings multiples could
continue to go higher," he added.
    Eight of the 10 main sectors on the index were higher on
Monday.
    The materials sector, which includes mining stocks, advanced
0.5 percent, following gold and copper prices higher. Barrick
Gold Corp jumped 1.7 percent to C$19.54, and Teck
Resources Ltd climbed 2.1 percent to C$24.36.
    Shares of energy producers strengthened 0.4 percent, with
Canadian Natural Resources Ltd rising 0.4 percent to
C$49.03.
    Financials, the index's most heavily weighted sector, were
up slightly. Royal Bank of Canada gained 0.3 percent to
C$76.28, and Toronto Dominion Bank rose 0.2 percent to
C$54.93.
    

 (Editing by W Simon and Chizu Nomiyama)
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