Update: TSX Adds 47 Points, Erasing Earlier Gains as Valeant Plunges 19% on SEC Probe News

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Canada's main stock market suffered a late-day decline but stayed in positive territory for most of Monday's trading session, even as Valeant Pharmaceuticals plunged on news of an SEC probe. The S&P/TSX Composite Index gained 47 points, or 0.4%, to finish at 12,844, beating the U.S. markets, which all closed in the red.

Healthcare was the main decliner as Valeant shares declined sharply (see below), falling 5%. Materials helped offset the damage with a 1.85% gain as gold stocks rose. Energy was 2% higher on stronger crude prices while financials gained 0.2%.

Shares of Valeant Pharmaceuticals (VRX.TO) plunged 19% amid ongoing turmoil over the embattled drug maker's delayed financial results and its leader's health. And things got even worse late Monday with news of a fresh SEC investigation into the drug company. Heavily traded Encana (ECA.TO) climbed 7% while Baytex Energy (BTE.TO) was up nearly 3%.

On the oil market, April oil settled at $33.75 a barrel on the Nymex, up 3% for the day. Oil gained less than 1% for the month.

Gold futures settled higher on Monday to score their largest monthly gain in about four years, as continued skittishness around stocks fostered demand for an asset viewed as a haven, MarketWatch reported.

Gold settled at $1,234.40 per ounce up $14, or 1.2%, for the session. For the month, gold gained more than 10%, its biggest rise since January 2012. Silver gained 1% while copper was little changed.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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