Energy losses lead TSX lower, gold miners limit fall

Tue Oct 25, 2016 5:01pm EDT
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By Alastair Sharp

TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index fell on Tuesday in a broad retreat led by energy stocks as oil prices weakened, while gold miners offset the losses as bullion hit a near three-week high.

Four energy stocks were the heaviest weights on the index and the group lost 1.6 percent overall, as oil prices fell after a recent push above $50 a barrel.

The materials sector, which includes precious and base metals miners and fertilizer companies, was the only one of 10 main groups to gain, adding 1.8 percent.

The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index closed down 52.38 points, or 0.35 percent, at 14,870.63.

"This is more of a mean reversion behavior in the market, not necessarily a decisive move," said Sid Mokhtari, director of institutional equity research at CIBC World Markets. "It's been so far so good in Canada particularly."

The index closed at a 16-month high on Friday, after rallying about 29 percent since hitting a three-year low in January.

Mokhtari said investors betting on economic growth were broadly moving into industrial, transportation, technology and energy stocks and away from the telecom and consumer sectors.

The day's most influential gainer was Barrick Gold Corp, which rose 2.2 percent to C$22.57. Sources told Reuters that two Chinese miners had held talks with Barrick about buying a 50 percent stake in its Veladero gold mine in Argentina.   Continued...

A TMX Group sign, the company that runs the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX), is seen in Toronto, June 23, 2014. REUTERS/Mark Blinch