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TSX ended a difficult year for the market on a bright note

Canada's main stock index closed higher along with the US market on the last trading day which was a difficult year for stocks.

The S & P / TSX composite index closed up 100.86 points, at 14,322.86, as part of a late December rally. But that is not enough to prevent significant losses this year.

The index ended down 12 percent for 2018 after the decline that began in the summer gained momentum as trade disputes and slowing global growth fueled fears of a recession.

The decline accelerated in December, pushing the index down to its lowest level of 13,776.90 on Christmas Eve, before holding a modest rally in the final days of the year.

This decline, especially in the last month of this year, made most market observers off guard.

"We all feel as if the market is a little more advanced, or maybe in some cases far more advanced than that," said Allan Small, senior investment advisor at HollisWealth.

He said the economy had slowed somewhat, but was still healthy and he expected more small stock corrections than the big economic crisis.

"Many people talk about recession, but I don't think recession is anywhere in the short term. What I think you have is a bear market without recession."

However, investors must familiarize themselves with the recent volatility due to a major trade dispute with China reaching a deadline in the new year, while Democrats take over the US House of Representatives.

"I guess that's just stirring the pan a little more," Small said.

Investors did get some positive sentiment in the trade sector after US President Donald Trump tweeted that he had a positive discussion with Chinese President Xi Jinping, said Small.

"President Trump tweeted over the weekend that he spoke with the president of China, everything seemed positive, he seemed optimistic in his tweet that they were working towards a kind of trade agreement."

The news helped send the Dow Jones industrial average up 265.06 points at 23,327.46. The S & P 500 index ended 21.11 points higher at 2,506.85, while the Nasdaq composite rose 50.76 points to 6,635.28.

U.S. Stock still ending down for this year to show the worst in a decade. The S & P 500 ended down 6.2 percent, the Dow fell 5.6 percent.

The Canadian dollar averaged 73.30 US cents, down 0.02 percent from Friday.

The February crude oil contract closed up eight cents to US $ 45.41 per barrel and the February natural gas contract fell 36 cents to US $ 2.94 US per mmBTU.

The February gold contract fell $ 1.70 to $ 1,281.30 US per ounce, and the March copper contract fell five cents to $ 2.63 US per pound.

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