TSX flat with eye on U.S. budget talks; golds weigh

Fri Oct 11, 2013 7:59pm EDT
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By Solarina Ho

TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index was little changed on Friday with investors awaiting a resolution by U.S. lawmakers to end a federal government shutdown and overall market action muted ahead of the Canadian Thanksgiving long weekend.

A drop in gold producers and a decline in Potash Corp of Saskatchewan Inc (POT.TO: Quote), after the fertilizer company cut its profit forecast for the third quarter, weighed on the market, offsetting some of the optimism around a possible deal being reached in Washington.

"The TSX is of course adversely affected today by the drop in precious metals in particular ... you also had that announcement by Potash pre-warning," said David Baskin, portfolio manager and president of Baskin Financial Services

"Add that all up, and that's why Canada is not following the U.S. uphill."

After recording its biggest jump in three months in the previous session, the Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE finished the session down 2.30 points, or 0.02 percent, at 12,892.11.

President Barack Obama and congressional Republican leaders worked to end their fiscal impasse on Friday but struggled to strike a deal on the details for a short-term reopening of the government and an increase in the U.S. debt limit.

Failure to raise the borrowing limit would have serious repercussions for the fiscal standing of the United States, the world's biggest economy, and for markets and economies of the United States and other nations worldwide.

Investors, who are also looking ahead to the start of the earnings session soon, hesitated to make calls until there was certainty about a resolution to the crisis.   Continued...

A general view of the TSX (Toronto Stock Exchange) Broadcast Centre in Toronto June 20, 2008. REUTERS/Mark Blinch