CANADA STOCKS-Banks and miners lead TSX to 6th straight gain

Reuters

* TSX ends up 61.53 points, or 0.47 percent, at 13,248.06

* Gold miners and banks lead charge to two-year high

By Alastair Sharp

TORONTO, Oct 22 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index gained

for a sixth straight session on Tuesday, led by banks and

mining stocks after weak U.S. jobs data bolstered expectations

that the U.S. Federal Reserve will stick with its monetary

stimulus program for a while longer.

Optimism about the economic outlook in China, a major buyer

of many of Canada's raw materials, also lifted mining companies.

Among them, Teck Resources Ltd jumped 4.1 percent to

C$29.72.

"The numbers out of China seem to be better now and that

seems to be having an impact especially on the materials area,"

said John Kinsey, portfolio manager at Caldwell Securities.

He pointed to signs that Australian iron ore and coal

companies are ramping up production and to improving data out of

Europe, a key market for Chinese exports, as further reason to

believe the massive Chinese economy might be stabilizing.

Two of the world's biggest gold miners gave the index the

biggest boost, with Goldcorp Inc adding 4.9 percent to

C$26.99, and Barrick Gold Corp gaining 4.8 percent to

hit a one-month high of C$20.47.

The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index

ended up 61.53 points, or 0.47 percent, at 13,248.06.

It has gained almost 3 percent since Oct. 11, and is at its

highest level since July 2011.

U.S. employers added 148,000 positions last month, the Labor

Department said, below expectations of 180,000. While the job

count for August was revised higher and the unemployment rate

ticked down to 7.2 percent from 7.3 percent, employment gains in

July were revised lower and were the weakest since June 2012.

While the soft jobs number suggests demand in Canada's

largest export market will remain weak, the prospect of a

looser-for-longer U.S. monetary policy has encouraged Canadian

investors.

"There is a fair amount of stability in the Canadian market

and people seem to be quite comfortable," said Fred Ketchen,

director of equity trading at ScotiaMcLeod.

"Our market is still considerably behind the gains they've

had in the U.S. market year to date, so maybe we've still got

room to outperform the U.S. market for November and December."

Banks also featured heavily in the list of gainers with Bank

of Nova Scotia up 0.9 percent at C$62.54, Canadian

Imperial Bank of Commerce rising 1.2 percent to C$86.41,

and Bank of Montreal adding 0.7 percent to C$72.63.

ScotiaMcLeod's Ketchen said he expects investors will

cautiously return to the market given the low-interest-rate

environment, with banks, pipelines, utilities and telecoms

likely to benefit.

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