CANADA STOCKS-TSX steady as investors eye U.S. debt deal talks
* TSX rises 1.36 points, or 0.01 percent, to 12,895.77 * Six of 10 main sectors advance * Potash slips after cut in profit forecast * Barrick, Goldcorp weigh the most on market By John Tilak TORONTO, Oct 11 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index was little changed on Friday with investors closely watching whether U.S. lawmakers would reach an agreement soon to end a U.S. government shutdown and to raise its borrowing limit. A drop in gold producers and a decline in Potash Corp of Saskatchewan Inc, after the fertilizer giant cut its profit forecast for the third quarter, weighed on the market. After recording its biggest jump in three months in the previous session, nervousness returned to the Toronto market as the U.S. budget impasse dragged on. President Barack Obama is expected to press his case for a quick reopening of the entire federal government coupled with an emergency increase of U.S. borrowing authority when he meets with Senate Republicans. Failure to raise the borrowing limit would have serious repercussions for the fiscal standing of the United States, the world's biggest economy, and for markets and economies of the U.S. and other world nations. Investors hesitated to make calls until there was certainty about a resolution to the crisis. "We're certainly sitting on the sidelines," said David Cockfield, managing director and portfolio manager at Northland Wealth Management. "I just keep my head down for the moment." "I want to see some actual results before I make up my mind how this is going to turn out," he added. "I don't think it's over until it's over." The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index was up 1.36 points, or 0.01 percent, at 12,895.77. Cockfield still expects the crisis will be resolved soon, and the Canadian benchmark index will make some gains between now and the end of the year. Six of the 10 main sectors on the index were higher Friday. The financial sector gained 0.4 percent, with Royal Bank of Canada climbing 0.5 percent to C$68.05. Energy shares added 0.4 percent, with Suncor Energy Inc rising 0.2 percent to C$36.96. But weakness in the price of bullion weighed on the materials sector, which includes mining stocks. Gold producers fell more than 2 percent. Barrick Gold Corp shed 3 percent to C$17.98, and Goldcorp Inc fell 2 percent to C$24.75. The two stocks had the biggest negative influence on the market. Potash Corp was down 1.6 percent at C$32.46 after it estimated quarterly profit would be below market expectations as its customers delayed purchases amid market uncertainty.
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