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U.S. Fed chairman Ben Bernanke and other members of the Federal Open Market Committee are taking dramatic steps to demystify the institution and its policy-making strategy. (Kevin Lamarque/Reuters/Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)
U.S. Fed chairman Ben Bernanke and other members of the Federal Open Market Committee are taking dramatic steps to demystify the institution and its policy-making strategy. (Kevin Lamarque/Reuters/Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)

At the open: Dow, TSX post modest gains Add to ...

North American stocks rose modestly at the start of trading on Monday, as European finance ministers meet to hammer out the details on a multi-billion loan to the International Monetary Fund – seen as a important step in stabilizing the debt crisis in Italy and Spain.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 38 points or 0.3 per cent, to 11,905. The broader S&P 500 rose 4 points or 0.3 per cent, to 1224. In Canada, the S&P/TSX composite index rose 20 points or 0.2 per cent, to 11,655.

Caterpillar Inc. rose 1.4 per cent, Pfizer Inc. rose 0.9 per cent and McDonald’s Corp. rose 0.7 per cent. However, U.S. banks retreated after the Federal Reserve backed an international move to require banks to hold more capital. Bank of America Corp. fell 0.9 per cent and JPMorgan Chase & Co. fell 0.3 per cent.

Eldorado Gold Corp. fell 10.6 per cent after it struck a $2.5-billion deal to take over European Gold Fields Ltd. Among other gold stocks, Barrick Gold Corp. fell 1.1 per cent.

Canadian bank stocks were relatively flat, but Suncor Energy Inc. rose 0.6 per cent.

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