March 20, 2018 / 8:50 PM / a month ago

CANADA STOCKS-TSX advances as oil rally boosts energy shares

(Adds details throughout; updates prices to close)

TORONTO, March 20 (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index rose on Tuesday, rebounding from a 10-day low the day before, as higher oil prices boosted the energy group, while financial and technology shares also climbed.

* The largest percentage gainer on the TSX was Birchcliff Energy Ltd, which rose 8.2 percent.

* The overall energy group rose 1.8 percent, with Suncor Energy Inc up 2.2 percent at C$42.99.

* U.S. crude oil futures settled 2.2 percent higher at $63.40 a barrel as tension in the Middle East and the possibility of further falls in Venezuelan output helped offset the impact of growing U.S. crude production.

* The financials group, which accounts for more than one-third of the weight of the TSX, advanced 0.5 percent, while technology rose 1.7 percent to reach its highest since November 2000.

* Shopify Inc rose 5.3 percent to C$200.35 after Hydropothecary Corp selected the company to power ecommerce services for medical and recreational cannabis markets.

* The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index closed up 26.97 points, or 0.17 percent, at 15,616.36.

* Seven of the index’s 10 main groups ended higher as investors awaited the Federal Reserve’s interest rate decision on Wednesday for clues on how aggressive the U.S. central bank will be with monetary policy.

* The materials group, which includes precious and base metals miners and fertilizer companies, lost 1.3 percent.

* Shares of First Quantum Minerals Ltd plunged 12.4 percent to C$18.00 after the company said that Zambia’s tax agency had sent it a letter saying it owed around $8 billion in import duties and other items.

* The TSX posted 7 new 52-week highs and 3 new lows. (Reporting by Fergal Smith and Medha Singh; Editing by Sandra Maler)

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