02/06/2018 11:36 EST | Updated 02/06/2018 11:41 EST

North American stock markets reverse course, as loonie continues slide

TORONTO — Canada's main stock market pared back some of its losses as U.S. stocks closed sharply higher after another turbulent day of steep ups and downs.

The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index was ahead 29.12 points at 15,363.93, led by strong gains in the health-care and base metals sectors.

In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average was up 567.02 points at 24,912.77 — coincidentally, about the same amount it plunged at the opening of markets. 

Meanwhile, the S&P 500 was up 46.20 points at 2,695.14 and the Nasdaq composite index was up 148.35 points at 7,115.88.

The Dow posted its biggest percentage decline since August 2011 on Monday, driven by fears the U.S. Federal Reserve will raise interest rates faster than expected.

In currency markets, the Canadian dollar closed at an average trading value of 79.81 cents US, down 0.30 of a U.S. cent.

The March crude contract was down 76 cents to US$63.39 per barrel and the March natural gas contract was up one cent to US$2.76 per mmBTU.

The April gold contract was down US$7.00 to US$1,329.50 an ounce and the March copper contract was down three cents to US$3.19 a pound.