CANADA STOCKS-TSX edges up as 'cooler heads' weigh new virus variant

BY Reuters | ECONOMIC | 11/29/21 04:26 PM EST

(Updates to market close, adds investor quotes, details)

* TSX ends up 23.04 points, or 0.1%, at 21,148.94

* Energy rises 1.3%; materials up 1.3%

By Fergal Smith

TORONTO, Nov 29 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index rebounded on Monday, led by resource stocks, as investors became more comfortable with the risks that the Omicron coronavirus variant could pose to the global economic outlook.

The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index ended up 23.04 points, or 0.1%, at 21,148.94.

On Friday, the index posted its biggest decline in more than a year as news of the new, possibly vaccine-resistant variant rattled investor sentiment.

"Cooler heads are prevailing," said Allan Small, senior investment adviser of the Allan Small Financial Group with iA Private Wealth. "We become acclimatized to this sort of thing. And I think that's what you are seeing in the markets today."

Sentiment in global markets also improved as investors waited for more details to assess the severity of the variant on the world economy.

The energy sector climbed 1.3%, helped by a rebound in oil prices as some investors took the view that Friday's slump in crude was overdone.

The materials sector, which includes precious and base metals miners and fertilizer companies, added 1.3%.

The Toronto market's record-breaking rally paused in the last few weeks as weakness in commodities and concerns around COVID-19 resurgence in Europe dented sentiment.

Still, the index is on track to end the month in positive territory with consumer discretionary stocks and miners leading gains.

Enbridge (ENBA) fell 2.1% to a three-month low after Canada Energy Regulator (CER) late on Friday rejected the company's plan to offer a long-term contract to its customers to carry crude oil on the country's biggest oil pipeline.

Investors await bank earnings this week, seeking more information on dividends and buybacks. Earlier this month, Canadian regulators granted financial institutions approval to return more capital to shareholders.

Canadian third-quarter GDP data is due on Wednesday, which could offer clues on the strength of the domestic economy. (Reporting by Fergal Smith; Additional reporting by Amal S in Bengaluru; Editing by Dan Grebler)

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