CANADA STOCKS-TSX slips as U.S. consumer data drags; Suncor up

Fri Nov 13, 2009 10:57am EST
 
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 * TSX down 0.2 percent at 11,340.69
 * Suncor budgets C$5.5 bln for 2010 capex
 * Consumer sentiment down, weakest in 3 months
 (Adds details)
 TORONTO, Nov 13 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index lost
ground on Friday as weak consumer sentiment data from the
United States battled with strength in Suncor Energy (SU.TO: Quote)
and other oil producers.
 Suncor was among the most influential advancers on the TSX,
up 0.66 percent at C$36.67, after the country's biggest oil
company said it would budget C$5.5 billion for capital
expenditures next year and would restart construction at an oil
sands project. [ID:nBNG481094]
 But a weaker than expected reading of U.S. consumer
sentiment weighed on the market. The index measure fell in
early November to the lowest level in three months amid grim
expectations for job and income prospects, the
Reuters/University of Michigan survey showed. [ID:nN13464376]
 At 10:40 a.m. (1540 GMT), the S&P/TSX composite index
.GSPTSE was down 20.07 points, or 0.2 percent, at 11,340.69.
It had briefly popped higher after a negative start. Seven of
its 10 main sectors were lower.
 "Particularly going into Black Friday next week, if you are
a U.S. retailer, big box or otherwise, you're probably a little
concerned after seeing that number. That's pulling the market
down a bit," said Steve Ibel, institutional equities trader at
Beacon Securities in Halifax, Nova Scotia.
 Black Friday, or the day after U.S. Thanksgiving, typically
marks the official launch of the U.S. holiday shopping season,
when retailers offer eye-popping deals to attract customers.
 The consumer sentiment figures also come on the heels of a
guarded earnings outlook for the crucial Christmas quarter from
retail giant Wal-Mart (WMT.N: Quote) on Thursday. [ID:nN12404234]
 Financials, which are often a broad play on the economy,
were under pressure on Friday morning, with Royal Bank of
Canada (RY.TO: Quote) and Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS.TO: Quote) among the key
decliners.
 Shares of Mega Brands MB.TO jumped more than 16 percent
to 99 Canadian cents after the toymaker said it returned to
profit in the third quarter.  [ID:nN13456455]
 ($1=$1.05 Canadian)
 (Reporting by Ka Yan Ng; editing by Rob Wilson)