CANADA STOCKS-TSX declines as Ukraine tensions intensify

Tue May 6, 2014 11:17am EDT
 
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* TSX down 51.68 points, or 0.35 percent, at 14,645.35
    * Nine of 10 main index sectors decline
    * BCE, WestJet drop after reporting results

    By John Tilak
    TORONTO, May 6 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index fell on
Tuesday on worries about escalating tensions in Ukraine and
weakness in the materials sector from lower commodity prices.
    Ukraine appeared to be inching closer towards war, with
supporters of Russia and of a united Ukraine accusing one
another of tearing the country apart. 
    Data that showed a narrowing of the U.S. trade deficit in
March failed to bring much comfort. Canada's trade surplus
plummeted to C$79 million ($72 million) in March from C$847
million in February.  
    The Toronto market, which is up about 7.5 percent this year,
slipped for a second straight session.  
    "We're having a little correction here," said David
Cockfield, managing director and portfolio manager at Northland
Wealth Management. "Ukraine is finally making markets a little
nervous."
    "It's a nasty situation. It could descend into a civil war,"
he added. "This could continue for a while."
    Cockfield, who expects the TSX to outperform U.S. stocks
this year, said the underlying fundamentals of the Canadian
market were solid. 
    The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
 was down 51.68 points, or 0.35 percent, at 14,645.35.
Nine of the 10 main sectors on the index were in the red.
    Financials, the index's most heavily weighted sector, gave
back 0.4 percent. Toronto Dominion Bank was down 0.5
percent at C$51.98, and Bank of Montreal lost 0.5
percent to C$74.96.
    The materials sector, which includes mining stocks, shed 0.6
percent. Potash Corp slipped 1.2 percent to C$39.16.
With the price of bullion falling, Barrick Gold Corp 
fell 0.7 percent to C$18.97.
    In corporate news, BCE Inc reported a
better-than-expected adjusted profit, helped by the inclusion of
TV and radio content producer Astral Media and strong growth in
its wireless business. But the stock gave back 1.1 percent to
C$48.38. 
    WestJet Airlines Ltd dropped 2.3 percent to C$24.40
after the carrier reported quarterly results. 
    

 (Editing by Andrew Hay)