By Jennifer Kwan
TORONTO (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index
ended slightly higher Monday, led by rising financial
issues, but broader investor concerns about the recovery
rattled global equities and kept TSX gains in check.
The TSX held above water on strength in banking, with Royal
Bank of Canada up 1.7 percent at C$51.25, and Bank of
Montreal higher by 1.3 percent at C$58.33. National
Bank of Canada climbed 2 percent to C$61.22.
The broader financials group, up 0.5 percent, led the way
higher as investors bought beaten-down shares, which had fallen
in recent weeks the back of concerns about the global
More recently, some bank issues tumbled after reporting
weak trading results, said Rick Meslin, head of Canadian
equities at UBS.
"People are a little constructive now suggesting that
future quarters might have some big ticket items, that the poor
performance of trading revenue probably isn't going to be much
of a factor in the next quarter," said Meslin.
However, Toronto-Dominion Bank and Bank of Nova
Scotia , both to report results this week, slipped by
about 0.2 percent.
The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
finished the session up 15.83 points, or 0.13
percent, at 11,895.55. Earlier, the index rose to 11,952.64,
its strongest level since June 22. Half of the index's 10 main
groups were higher.
The blue chip S&P/TSX 60 index closed 1.52 points
higher, or 0.22 percent, at 693.85.
Toronto's performance contrasted with U.S. stock indexes,
which sank on investor wariness about the economic recovery,
and global stocks were also lower
Investors were cautious ahead of closely watched U.S. data
on manufacturing, services and August non-farm payrolls due
later in the week, which are expected to confirm the economy is
continuing to slow.
In Canada, Tuesday's release of second-quarter gross
domestic product data may help seal expectations of whether the
Bank of Canada will raise interest rates on Sept. 8.
Those broader economic worries capped gains on the TSX's
resource-heavy index Monday.
"There's no confidence in the market right now. It's low
volume. Investors seem to be sitting back and waiting for
direction," said Meslin.
Elsewhere, Research In Motion finished the day
largely flat, up just 0.04 percent at C$48.37, as the
BlackBerry maker averted a threatened ban on its services in
RIM will give India access to secure BlackBerry data
beginning Sept. 1, a government source said on Monday, leading
New Delhi to put off a decision on whether to shut down the
Takeover target Potash Corp, closed up 0.55
percent at C$155.85 and remained in the corporate spotlight.
BHP Billiton denied on Monday that it had
plans to sell off some of Potash's assets if it succeeded in
its $38.6 billion hostile takeover bid.
Lululemon, the top net loser on the market,
dropped 9.8 percent to C$33.75 after Jefferies & Co downgraded
the stock to "underperform" from "hold" saying the specialty
clothing retailer is reinvesting in inventory at the wrong
(Reporting by Jennifer Kwan)