CANADA STOCKS-TSX little changed; telecoms drag after Globalive

Fri Dec 11, 2009 11:02am EST
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 * TSX down 0.02 percent, at 11,462.41
 * Shares of BCE, Telus, Rogers down
 * Higher energy shares provide support
 (Adds details, analyst comment)
 By Irene Kuan
 TORONTO, Dec 11 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index was
little changed on Friday as the telecoms sector sank after
Canada's decision to allow Globalive to offer wireless service,
dragging down shares of existing mobile carriers.
 Shares of Rogers Communications Inc RCIb.TO, Canada's
biggest wireless firm, fell 3.39 percent at C$32.24. Rival BCE
Inc BCE.TO fell 1.28 percent at C$27.66 and Telus Corp T.TO
dropped 1.87 percent to C$33.05.
 Canada surprised investors on Friday by allowing
Egyptian-backed Globalive to offer wireless phone service,
overturning a regulatory ruling and setting the stage for
stepped-up competition in the sector. [ID:nN11255098]
 "If you've got another player in the space, it's going to
eat away at their business," said Bruce Latimer, trader at
Dundee Securities.
 At 10:30 a.m. (15:30 GMT), the S&P/TSX composite index
.GSPTSE was down 2.18 points, or 0.02 percent, at 11,462.41.
 Another significant drag on the market was the gold sector,
including Barrick Gold ABX.TO, which fell 1.37 percent to
C$42.50. Miners fell after gold prices turned negative. [GOL/]
 The impact of the Globalive news and weaker gold prices
more than offset gains in energy shares, which rose as oil
hovered above the key $70 a barrel mark after falling for seven
days. [O/R]
 Energy stocks helping to offset losses included Canadian
Natural Resources Ltd CNQ.TO, up 0.95 percent at C$69.23.
 (Reporting by Irene Kuan; Editing by Jeffrey Hodgson)