* TSX up 61.02 points, or 0.4 percent, to 15,422.12
* Eight of the TSX's 10 main groups advanced
By Solarina Ho
TORONTO, Dec 29 Canada's main stock index rose
on Thursday as stocks rallied broadly in light holiday trading,
closing at the highest level since April 2015.
Gold mining stocks were the most influential movers, helped
by bullion prices that rose more than 1 percent to their highest
level in more than two weeks.
The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
rose 61.02 points, or 0.4 percent, to 15,422.12. It
was the TSX's best close since April 15, 2015.
The top five index movers were all gold miners. Barrick Gold
rose 6.8 percent to C$22.12, Silver Wheaton Corp
advanced 9.0 percent to C$27.32, while Agnico Eagle
Mines Ltd climbed 6.7 percent to C$58.57.
The overall materials group, which includes precious and
base metals miners and fertilizer companies, added 3.6 percent.
"There was big buying that came in at the close and that
pushed the gold stocks up," said John Ing, president of Maison
Placements Canada. "My expectations are the lows have been seen.
The gold stocks are going into 2017 much stronger than people
Of the index's 10 main groups, all but the heavily weighted
financials and energy groups gained ground.
"There's a little bit of window dressing going on before the
year end. Bank stocks were pretty heavily traded today," Ing
The financials group slipped 0.4 percent, dragged lower in
part by Toronto Dominion Bank's 0.5 percent decline to
C$66.75 and Royal Bank of Canada's 0.4 percent dip to
The energy group retreated 0.3 percent.
Advancing issues outnumbered declining ones on the TSX by
168 to 75, for a 2.24-to-1 ratio on the upside.
The index posted five new 52-week highs and no new lows.
(Reporting by Solarina Ho; Editing by Leslie Adler)