Energy stocks lift TSX out of the red, as loonie strengthens on jobs data

TORONTO _ A surging energy sector helped lift the Toronto stock index out of negative territory today, as the loonie got a boost from positive jobs data.

The S&P/TSX composite index added 5.17 points to 16,020.16, with energy stocks rising alongside strengthening oil prices.

The December crude contract climbed $1.10 to US$55.64 per barrel.

In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average advanced 22.93 points to 23,539.19. The S&P 500 index was up 7.99 points to 2,587.84 and the Nasdaq composite index gained 49.50 points to 6,764.44.

The loonie was trading at an average price of 78.35 cents US, up 0.36 of a U.S. cent, following a Statistics Canada report that the economy added 35,300 jobs in October.

Elsewhere in commodities, the December natural gas contract was up five cents to US$2.98 per mmBTU. The December gold contract dropped $8.90 to US$1,269.20 an ounce and the December copper contract was down three cents to US$3.12 a pound.