TSX slips as China devaluation hits resource shares

Tue Aug 11, 2015 4:43pm EDT
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By Alastair Sharp

TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada's resource-laden main stock index fell back on Tuesday, as oil and mining stocks were hit by a rout in commodity prices following China's unexpected move to devalue its currency.

The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE sank as much as 1.4 percent before paring those losses to close down 51.72 points, or 0.36 percent, at 14,414.67. Seven of the 10 main sectors lost ground.

The People's Bank of China devalued the yuan by nearly 2 percent overnight in China's latest attempt to bolster its economy following a string of poor economic data.

"It's created more negativity," said Brian Pow, an equity analyst at Acumen Capital Partners in Calgary. "We've seen it in the oil price getting pushed down hard."

Prices for copper, aluminum and U.S. crude oil hit six-year lows on concerns the cheaper yuan will make importing commodities more expensive for China, which is among the world's top consumers of resources.

Energy stocks fell 0.8 percent, with Crescent Point Energy Corp (CPG.TO: Quote) down 4.9 percent at C$18.02 and Encana Corp (ECA.TO: Quote) off 2.5 percent to C$9.50.

Others were more sanguine about the Chinese move, as the state-run economy's slowing growth is managed from above.

"China's probably going to have a 5 or 6 percent growth rate. It's a managed economy. It's not your free enterprise economy, and they will get their growth one way or another," said David Cockfield, portfolio manager at Northland Wealth Management.   Continued...

A man walks past an old Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) sign in Toronto, June 23, 2014.  REUTERS/Mark Blinch