TSX falls as financials and resource stocks slide
By Fergal Smith
TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index fell to a two-week low on Tuesday as lower commodity prices weighed on energy and materials stocks, while financials dropped after Canadian Western Bank (CWB.TO: Quote) set aside more money for loan losses.
Oil prices retreated further from the year's highs hit last week as rising output renewed worries about the global glut of crude, while copper fell as manufacturing data from China undermined confidence and gold turned lower after nearing the prior session's 15-month high.
"You got the double whammy of gold being down and oil being down," said Philip Petursson, managing director of Capital Markets & Strategy at Manulife Asset Management.
The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE closed down 157.95 points, or 1.14 percent, at 13,707.68. It touched its lowest since April 18 at 13,599.93.
Weak earnings have challenged the market, said Petursson. However, he expects the index to climb above the 14,000 threshold this year as lower U.S. oil production helps sustain the recent uptrend in oil prices.
Shares of Encana Corp (ECA.TO: Quote)ECA.N fell 10.4 percent to C$8.33. The oil and gas producer posted a bigger-than-expected quarterly loss due to lower production amid a steep fall in oil prices.
Suncor Energy Inc (SU.TO: Quote) fell 1.8 percent to C$34.95, while Canadian Natural Resources Ltd (CNQ.TO: Quote) was down nearly 2 percent at C$35.93 and the overall energy group declined 2.5 percent.
U.S. crude CLc1 prices settled at $43.65 a barrel, down 2.52 percent. Continued...