April 9, 2018 / 9:14 PM / in 17 days

CANADA STOCKS-Financials boost TSX as Kinder Morgan falls 12.6 pct

(New throughout, updates prices to close)

TORONTO, April 9 (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index rose on Monday as gains for financials offset a steep decline in the shares of Kinder Morgan Canada Ltd after the company halted most work on a disputed pipeline expansion.

* The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index closed up 20.29 points, or 0.13 percent, at 15,227.70.

* Wall Street’s major indexes also rose as a softer stance by U.S. policymakers on China tariffs powered a rebound from last week’s sell-off, although stocks pared gains in the final minutes of the trading session.

* The financials group, which accounts for more than one-third of the index’s weight, rose 0.4 percent and consumer staples advanced 1.6 percent.

* The largest percentage gainer on the TSX was Prometic Life Sciences, which rose 5.9 percent, while the largest decliner was Kinder Morgan, down 12.6 percent.

* Business groups and local officials called for Canada’s government to guarantee that an expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline is completed, after Kinder Morgan Canada’s chief executive, Steve Kean, announced the halt on Sunday.

* Shares of Kinross Gold Corp, fell 8.7 percent to C$4.60 following U.S. sanctions on Russia.

* Five of the TSX’s 10 main groups ended higher. The index posted no new 52-week highs and three new lows.

* Among the most active Canadian shares by volume were weed stocks. Aurora Cannabis was down 8.6 percent at C$7.40 and Canopy Growth Co fell 7.0 percent to C$25.74.

* Canadian companies remain optimistic about sales growth despite trade uncertainties, the Bank of Canada said in a report that boosted the currency and reinforced expectations of further interest rate hikes down the line. (Reporting by Fergal Smith; Editing by Peter Cooney)

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