CANADA STOCKS-TSX slumps as U.S. economic data, resources weigh

Fri Apr 26, 2013 11:25am EDT
 
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* TSX down 95.75 points, or 0.8 percent at 12,233.76
    * Energy off 1.4 pct, materials down 1.4 pct
    * Pace of U.S. growth increases, but falls short of
expectations
    * Commodity prices slip on U.S. data, but set for strong
weekly gains

    By Solarina Ho
    TORONTO, April 26 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock market
fell on Friday as natural resources stocks slumped and market
sentiment turned negative following U.S. economic growth data
that fell short of expectations.
    The U.S. gross domestic product expanded at a 2.5 percent
rate, an increase from the fourth quarter, but shy of the 3
percent growth analysts were hoping for. The
weaker-than-expected data in Canada's biggest trading partner
weighed on Canadian stocks.
    The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
 was down 95.75 points, or 0.8 percent at 12,233.76
late morning. All 10 of the index's key sectors were mired in
negative territory.
     The financial subindex, which make up just over 30 percent
of the main index's weight, was down 0.7 percent, led by Royal
Bank of Canada, which topped the list of most influential
losers. Shares were down 1.2 percent, at C$59.78.
    Energy stocks was down 1.4 percent, while the overall
materials group, home to mining companies, shed 1.4 percent.
    Canadian Natural Resources followed, and was down
2.4 percent at C$29.49, while Transcanada Corp, which
reported a 27 percent rise in first quarter profit, fell 1.9
percent at C$48.85. Suncor Energy gave
back 1.4 percent to trade at C$29.19.
    Oil prices slipped on Friday, weighed by caution over the
tepid growth outlook for the world's two largest oil consumers,
the United States and China. Still, crude prices were on track
for its biggest weekly gain since November. 
    Copper prices fell on the disappointing U.S. data, following
two days of gains, while gold prices, which were set for its
biggest weekly gain in more than a year, was on pause.
  
    Base metal mining company First Quantum Minerals Ltd 
slid 3.6 percent to C$17.35.
    "We seem to be in a euphoria and then reality sets in and
the fact is, the commodities continue to be top of mind. Even
though they've recovered ... they can't gain any traction or
momentum or any investor favor," said Barry Schwartz, vice
president and portfolio manager at Baskin Financial Services.
    "No question the market wants to see higher commodity prices
and see them sustained at a higher level, until they get back
in."
    Schwartz said prices of commodity stocks have disconnected
from the underlying commodities they sell.
    "You can't force people to buy them, but some of the
valuations are starting to look very, very attractive," he
added.