CANADA STOCKS-Sobering US retail data pulls TSX down sharply

Wed May 13, 2009 4:39pm EDT
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* TSX down for third day, falls 3.65 percent to 9,709.51

* U.S. retail sales for April worse than expected

* All 10 TSX sectors decline, led by energy, financials (Adds details; updates closing numbers)

By Ka Yan Ng

TORONTO, May 13 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index fell for a third consecutive session on Wednesday with heavy losses in the energy and financial groups as soft U.S. retail sales figures wounded investor sentiment.

A weaker-than-expected retail sales report curbed hopes for a quick economic recovery, sparking a selloff in equity markets on both sides of the border.

U.S. data showed sales at U.S. retailers fell for a second straight month in April, pulled down by sluggish gasoline and electronic goods purchases. [ID:nN12361802]

"We've had series of very good numbers and this is one that put some doubt onto it. If you get a whole series of them, that's a very different case in point," said Ian Nakamoto, director of research at MacDougall, MacDougall & MacTier.

"If anything, it's a sobering reminder of the economic situation."   Continued...