BNTX

TSX edges higher on COVID-19 vaccine hopes

Credit: REUTERS/CHRIS HELGREN

July 20 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index edged higher on Monday supported by hopes for a COVID-19 vaccine, although a spike in coronavirus cases around the world capped gains.

* German biotech firm BioNTech BNTX.O and U.S. drugmaker Pfizer PFE.N reported additional data from their experimental coronavirus vaccine that showed the vaccine was safe and induced an immune response in patients.

* The materials sector .GSPTTMT added 1% after gold prices rose as more than 14.5 million people have been infected by the novel coronavirus globally, according to a Reuters tally. GOL/

* The largest percentage gainers on the TSX were SilverCrest Metals Inc SIL.TO, which jumped 3.3%, after brokerage Eight Capital hiked its price target of the stock

* Its gains were followed by Alamos Gold Inc AGI.TO, which rose 3.2%.

* At 9:45 a.m. ET (13:45 GMT), the Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE was up 3.67 points, or 0.02%, at 16,127.15.

* The energy sector .SPTTEN climbed 0.1%. U.S. crude CLc1 prices were down 0.7% a barrel, while Brent crude LCOc1 lost 0.7%. O/R

* On the TSX, 93 issues were higher, while 122 issues declined for a 1.31-to-1 ratio to the downside, with 14.57 million shares traded.

* First Quantum Minerals Ltd FM.TO fell 5%, the most on the TSX, and the second biggest decliner was Ballard Power Systems Inc BLDP.TO, down 3.4%.

* The most heavily traded shares by volume were Royal Bank of Canada RY.TO, Northern Dynasty Minerals Ltd NDM.TO and Just Energy Group Inc JE.TO.

* The TSX posted 13 new 52-week highs and no new low.

* Across all Canadian issues there were 57 new 52-week highs and three new lows, with total volume of 37 million shares.

(Reporting by Amal S in Bengaluru; Editing by Amy Caren Daniel)

((Amal.S@thomsonreuters.com; within U.S.+1 646 223 8780; outside U.S. +91 80 6749 3677;))

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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