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At noon: Rising gold gives shine to S&P/TSX

The S&P/TSX index took the lead Friday, making a modest move higher bolstered by a rise in the price of gold and a continued strong outlook for other commodities. Meanwhile, the major indexes south of the border declined marginally.

Among the top gainers were Barrick Gold Corp., Goldcorp Inc. and Yamana Gold Inc. Other commodity stocks on an upswing were Teck Resources Ltd., Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan Inc. and Suncor Energy Inc.

The price of gold bullion rose $13.65 (U.S.) an ounce to $1,155.05.

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"The Greek problem is fundamentally quite bullish for gold," said Martin Murenbeeld, chief economist with Dundee Wealth Inc. "The [U.S.]dollar and gold should go up together, while the euro sinks," he said.

"Greece's problem is of a medium to long-term nature," Mr. Murenbeeld said. "Greece is at the beginning of what I think will be a series of sovereign wealth crises."

The sovereign debt problem is also likely to affect the level of interest rates in around the world, he said. "Monetary policy is likely to stay relatively easy to help deal with the sovereign debt crisis."

Other countries also facing debt problems in Europe include Portugal, Spain and Ireland.

The S&P/TSX rose 38.10 points or 0.31 per cent to 12,198.97.

The Dow Jones Industrial index fell 1.73 points to 11,132.18; the S&P 500 1.51 points to 1,207.16; and the Nasdaq 7.3 points to 2,511.67.

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