CANADA STOCKS-TSX eases from 18-month high to end lower

Mon Apr 12, 2010 4:56pm EDT
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* TSX down 0.23 percent at 12,148.66

* Index touches 18-month high during session

* Gold stocks weigh, commodities weaker

* Canadian Oil Sands rises 5 pct on Syncrude deal (Adds official close, comment)

By Cameron French

TORONTO, April 12 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index ended down slightly on Monday, pulling back from an 18-month high as initial optimism over a Greek debt deal faded, while retreating metal prices pulled down mining issues.

The index charged to its highest level since September 2008 early in the session, after euro zone finance ministers agreed on a 30 billion euro ($40.5 billion) rescue package for Greece.

But after going as high as 12,214.39, the TSX pulled back following cautionary comments from the German finance ministry [ID:nLDE63B0NP] and a late retreat in gold and base metals prices.

"The Greece debt story put a bid under the market ... but on the day we're seeing the commodity stocks a little bit weak," said Elvis Picardo, strategist at Global Securities in Vancouver.   Continued...