4 Min Read
* TSX falls 1.36 percent to 12,030.86
* All 10 sectors were drop, led by energy (Adds details)
By Ka Yan Ng
TORONTO, May 4 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index closed sharply lower on Tuesday, weighed down by persisting worries about Greece's aid package that sent investors to the safety of the U.S. dollar and hit oil prices.
The index's heavily weighted energy sector dropped 2.12 percent as the price of oil fell 4 percent in its steepest loss in three months. [O/R]
Among battered energy stocks, Canadian Oil Sands Trust COS_u.TO was off 4.15 percent at C$29.77, while Talisman Energy TLM.TO lost 2.98 percent to C$16.92.
Suncor Energy Inc (SU.TO) fell with the market, down 0.87 percent to C$34.38, after Canada's biggest oil and gas company reported a better than expected first-quarter profit. [ID:nN03213638]
The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE closed 165.65 points, or 1.36 percent, lower at 12,030.86, managing to recover a bit from a near 2 percent fall earlier in the day that had taken the index close to a two-week low.
All of its 10 sectors were down.
"The market has declined in sync with markets around the world. It's largely fear-related," said Elvis Picardo, analyst and strategist at Global Securities in Vancouver.
Investors were skeptical that European Union officials will be able to stop Greece's sovereign debt crisis from spreading to other high-debt euro zone countries, while China's recent monetary tightening also undermined sentiment.
Toronto's selloff echoed the wave of worry that gripped financial markets as investors fretted that the crisis in Europe could derail global economic recovery. One gauge of investor fear, the CBOE Volatility Index .VIX, jumped more than 18 percent. [ID:nN04122480]
The index's materials group was a major decliner, falling 1.15 percent as copper tumbled to two-month lows under $7,000 a tonne on demand fears sparked by the Chinese tightening. Some gold producers rose, however, moderating the group's losses. [MET/L]
Miner Teck Resources TCKb.TO slid 3.99 percent to C$37.25, while Inmet Mining IMN.TO fell 3.83 percent to C$48.97. On the upside, Barrick Gold ABX.TO rose 1.29 percent to C$43.90.
Also on the rise was Cameco Corp (CCO.TO), up 1.01 percent at C$25.03, after the uranium producer reported a 73 percent jump in profit and said it planned to boost output. [ID:nN04238801]
Loblaw Cos (L.TO), Canada's largest supermarket operator, topped expectations with a 25 percent rise in profit thanks to its purchase of an ethnic grocery-store chain and the rising Canadian dollar. Loblaw gained 0.93 percent to C$38.15. [ID:nN04190219]
WestJet Airlines Ltd (WJA.TO) reported a bigger than expected 63 percent drop in quarterly profit, sending its shares lower, but the low-cost Canadian carrier said there are signs it is on track for a stronger second quarter. WestJet fell 1.83 percent to C$13.40.
($1=$1.02 Canadian) (Reporting by Ka Yan Ng; editing by Peter Galloway)