TSX falls as Valeant plunge offsets gains for gold miners, financials

Tue Mar 15, 2016 5:18pm EDT
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By Fergal Smith

TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index fell on Tuesday as Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc (VRX.TO: Quote) tanked, overshadowing gains for gold miners and financials ahead of a Federal Reserve interest rate decision on Wednesday.

The shares of Valeant (VRX.TO: Quote) plunged 51 percent to C$45.14 after the drugmaker cut its 2016 revenue forecast by about 12 percent and said a delay in filing its annual report could pose a debt default risk.

"Valeant has got everyone's attention," said Paul Hand, managing director at RBC Capital Markets. "It's really quite stunning."

Industrial stocks also dragged, including a nearly 3 percent drop in the shares of Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd (CP.TO: Quote) to C$169.88.

However, excluding Valeant, the index would have risen 0.3 percent in quiet trading ahead of the Fed decision.

The materials group, which includes precious and base metals miners and fertilizer companies, advanced nearly 1 percent.

Barrick Gold Corp (ABX.TO: Quote) rose 4.6 percent to C$18.98 despite gold XAU= falling to its lowest in almost two weeks. [GOL/]

And the energy group closed slightly higher despite oil prices CLc1 LCOc1 falling for a second straight day.   Continued...

A sign board displaying Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) stock information is seen in Toronto June 23, 2014.  REUTERS/Mark Blinch