Commodities undermine TSX but RIM helps limit fall

Mon Aug 27, 2012 5:17pm EDT
 
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By Alastair Sharp

TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada's main equity index fell on Monday as investors pulled back from commodity stocks, but Research In Motion RIM.TO jumped on hopes that it will benefit from a crucial legal victory for Apple Inc over Samsung in a patent dispute.

A U.S. jury awarded the iPhone maker more than $1 billion in damages after finding the South Korean company had copied some critical features from it, a verdict which could lead to bans on Samsung products that use Google's Android software.

"It knocks Android sideways. If you viewed RIM as a third player in a three-way fight with Apple and Android...this potentially allows RIM to capture some market share," said David Baskin, portfolio manager and president of Baskin Financial Services.

The BlackBerry maker - which has hemorrhaged market share to both Apple and Google over the past several years - gained 1.9 percent to C$7.01.

Also helping to brake the benchmark index's fall was Talisman Energy Inc TLM.TO, which jumped 3.5 percent to C$14.03 on what Baskin described as market chatter about possible Chinese interest in the oil and gas producer.

But several other commodity-related shares sank as nervousness grew over the outlook for central bank stimulus measures as several key events approach. The top three heavyweight decliners were oil producer Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO: Quote), gold miner Goldcorp (G.TO: Quote), and fertilizer producer Potash Corp (POT.TO: Quote).

U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke will speak to central bankers at Jackson Hole, Wyoming, on Friday, and the European Central Bank will meet on September 6. Optimism about central bank moves has helped stock markets rally in recent weeks.

The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE closed down 33.4 points, or 0.3 percent, at 12,048.82 after opening in positive territory.   Continued...

 
People walk past an electronic board displaying the midday TSX index in Toronto February 16, 2011. REUTERS/Mark Blinch