CANADA STOCKS-TSX index slumps as commodities retreat

Thu Nov 6, 2008 5:35pm EST
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* Energy sector falls 6.8 percent as oil slides

* Materials sink 6.9 percent as metal prices fall

* Canadian Natural off 11.6 pct as project costs rise (Adds quote, details)

By Jennifer Kwan

TORONTO, Nov 6 (Reuters) - The Toronto Stock Exchange's main index dropped more than 3 percent on Thursday as energy and materials issues fell along with commodity prices, which were pressured by worries about a faltering world economy.

The oil and gas sector dropped 6.8 percent as the price of oil sank to $60.77 a barrel on fears that economic softness would undercut global demand. [ID:nSYD166191]

The materials group sank 6.9 percent with Potash Corp of Saskatchewan POT.TO down 7.6 percent at C$94.25.

Stocks that weighed on the TSX index included Canadian Natural Resources CNQ.TO, down 11.6 percent at C$53.40. Canadian Natural was a major drag as it said it would slash spending next year. [ID:nBNG401176]

Also leading the slide were Suncor Energy SU.TO, which fell 11.2 percent to C$24.75, and Research In Motion RIM.TO, which was down 9 percent at C$56.80   Continued...