Toronto's main stock index up moderately, loonie higher, crude flat

TORONTO _ North American stock markets were showing moderate gains in late-morning trading.

The S&P/TSX composite index climbed 81.89 points at 15,369.59, after nearly two hours of trading.

In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average gained 69.69 points at 19,866.12 and the S&P 500 rose 10.62 points to 2,267.58. The Nasdaq composite added 54.74 points at 5,467.28.

The Canadian dollar traded for 76.24 cents US, up 0.10 of a U.S. cent from Monday.

The January crude contract slipped five cents to US$52.78 per barrel and January natural gas was little-changed at US$3.51 per mmBtu.

The February gold contract fell $6.30 to US$1,159.50 an ounce and March copper contracts dropped three cents at US$2.59 a pound.