TSX ends slightly lower after posting a nine-month high

Thu May 26, 2016 5:51pm EDT
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By Fergal Smith

TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index edged slightly lower on Thursday, including losses for resource stocks as oil and gold prices dipped.

Still, the index has rallied nearly 22 percent from an almost 3-1/2-year low in January of 11,531.22, while it touched a fresh nine-month high earlier on Thursday.

It has been "climbing a wall of worry," overcoming concerns about the health of the economy and the prospect of U.S. interest rate hikes, said Rick Hutcheon, president and chief operating officer at RKH Investments.

It wouldn't be a surprise if the market were to pause to digest recent gains, but "the direction of least resistance is probably upwards," he added.

The materials group, which includes precious and base metals miners and fertilizer companies, lost 0.4 percent.

Barrick Gold Corp (ABX.TO: Quote) fell 1.3 percent to C$22.21, while spot gold XAU= dipped 0.3 percent.

The energy group fell 0.1 percent, including a 1.1 percent drop in the shares of Enbridge Inc (ENB.TO: Quote) to C$52.69.

Oil prices hit $50 a barrel for the first time in seven months, then bounced below that level and settled 8 cents lower on the day at $49.48 a barrel as investors worried robust price gains could encourage more output and add to the global glut. [O/R]   Continued...

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