Energy, bank stocks lead TSX to lower close

Wed Aug 8, 2012 5:19pm EDT
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By Alastair Sharp

TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada's benchmark stock index closed lower on Wednesday, weighed down by a drop in heavyweight energy, financial and mining stocks that eclipsed a strong showing from the country's largest telecom player, BCE Inc (BCE.TO: Quote).

A slew of major companies posted declines of more than 1 percent, breaking a two-session rally that had pushed the index to a one-month high.

The rally was driven by hopes for central bank action to tackle the euro zone debt crisis. But that early optimism has started to fade. <MKTS/GLOB>

"There is still enough concern out there that there are ready sellers," said David Cockfield, a portfolio manager at Northland Wealth Management. "It remains a market that is looking over its shoulder all the time."

Cockfield added that a stronger Canadian dollar did not help local equities, as investors moved some investments into U.S. markets which inched higher for a fourth day. <CAD/>.N

Energy and energy-related stocks played the biggest role of any sector in leading the market lower.

Among the heaviest weights were Suncor Energy (SU.TO: Quote), which dipped 1.6 percent to C$31.73, TransCanada Corp (TRP.TO: Quote), which slipped 2.3 percent to C$45.03, and Enbridge Inc (ENB.TO: Quote), down 1.9 percent at C$39.25.

Banks that contributed to the decline included Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS.TO: Quote), which fell 1.2 percent to C$51.97, Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO: Quote), down 1 percent at C$51.35, and Bank of Montreal (BMO.TO: Quote), which ended 1 percent lower at C$56.97. Insurer Manulife Financial fell 2 percent to C$10.83.   Continued...

A Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) logo is seen in Toronto November 9, 2007. REUTERS/Mark Blinch