TSX dips on Barrick as earnings in focus
By Claire Sibonney
TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada's main stock market eased on Wednesday, led by a decline in Barrick Gold Corp (ABX.TO: Quote), the world's largest gold producer, after the release of disappointing earnings from its African subsidiary.
African Barrick Gold Plc (ABGL.L: Quote) forecast production would shrink for a fifth straight year and said it would focus on cutting soaring costs after talks over a possible takeover of the company collapsed in January. Its shares were off more than 11 percent.
That sent Barrick, which owns a majority stake in the company, 2.6 percent lower to C$31.72. The gold miners as a whole were down 1.7 percent.
"We do think the golds are deeply oversold at this point, but the news that keeps coming out from the companies really doesn't inspire much confidence," said Elvis Picardo, strategist and vice president of research at Global Securities in Vancouver.
A slew of gold producers is due to report quarterly earnings, with Agnico Eagle Mines Ltd (AEM.TO: Quote) and Kinross Gold Corp (K.TO: Quote) later on Wednesday and Barrick Gold and Goldcorp Inc (G.TO: Quote) on Thursday.
The drop in gold stocks more than offset a 2.1 percent rise in the shares of Talisman Energy Inc (TLM.TO: Quote), which reported a quarterly profit on gains from asset sales.
"We continue to have a mixed earnings picture," said Fred Ketchen, director of equity trading at ScotiaMcLeod.