CANADA STOCKS-TSX slips after two sessions of gains

Wed Feb 3, 2010 4:26pm EST
 
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* TSX down 17.88 points, or 0.16 pct, at 11,390.46

* Miners a big drag on index as base metal prices slide (Updates to close, adds quotes)

By Jennifer kwan

TORONTO, Feb 3 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock market index ended slightly lower on Wednesday as investors grew cautious after two straight sessions of gains and a stronger greenback pressured commodity prices, weighing on miners.

First Quantum Minerals (FM.TO: Quote) topped the list of influential movers on the downside, dropping 8 percent to C$75.05, while Teck Resources (TCKb.TO: Quote) fell 2.2 percent to C$36.86, as the price of base metals pulled back.

Copper prices tumbled to 2-1/2-month lows as gains by the U.S. dollar and concerns over Chinese monetary tightening and European credit problems reflected an uncertain outlook for the global economic recovery. [MET/L] Gold prices were also weaker. [GOL/]

The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE finished the day down 17.88 points, or 0.16 percent, at 11,390.46.

After two days of gains in which the TSX composite added 2 percent, it was not surprising to see a pullback, said Rick Meslin, head of Canadian equities at UBS.

"It's really kind of like a bit of a battle with people taking risk off and balanced by people who are looking for opportunities," he said.

On the upside, were heavyweights Potash Corp of Saskatchewan Inc (POT.TO: Quote), which added 3.9 percent to C$114.77, and Research In Motion RIM.TO, which climbed 3.5 percent to C$72.00.

($1=$1.06 Canadian) (Reporting by Jennifer Kwan; editing by Rob Wilson)