The Canadian stock market closed higher Monday, extending last week's strong gains to start a week heavy with economic data.
The Toronto Stock Exchange's benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index rose 50.44 points, or 0.38 percent, after going up almost two percent last week, to finish the day's trading at 12,186.53 points.
Canadian stock market seemed to have broken a bit of the underperformance trend that had been existing for the majority of the year. The main index for the Toronto Stock Exchange surged to a near-two-year high last week in the wake of strong gold prices.
The Canadian dollar dropped slight at 97.14 U.S. cents two days before the Bank of Canada's latest interest rate announcement. Many economists expect the bank will keep its key rate at one percent until the fourth quarter of 2014.
Investors also looked to a heavy week of earnings data and economic reports that were held up because of the partial U.S. government shutdown which ended Wednesday.
The gold sector led advancers of the Canadian stock market, with the sector's shares going up more than 1.4 percent, which reflected the rise of bullion prices. Barrick Gold Corp. rose 2.4 percent to 19.53 Canadian dollars (about 18.94 U.S. dollars) per share, while Goldcorp Inc. shares increased 2.7 percent to 25.73 Canadian dollars apiece.
The energy sector was down 0.26 percent with the November crude oil contract on the New York Mercantile Exchange falling amid rising supplies of crude and lower demand. Encana Corporation shares dropped 0.27 percent to 18.37 Canadian dollars.
Financials stocks provided lift, with shares in Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce going up 1.6 percent to 85.35 Canadian dollars apiece.
Information technology sector led decliners, with BlackBerry shares losing 1.39 percent to 8.52 Canadian dollars.