CANADA STOCKS-TSX slips as resources, financials retreat

Tue Dec 14, 2010 6:24pm EST
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   * TSX down 15.78 points, or 0.12 percent, at 13,280.08
 * Five of the 10 main sectors finish lower
 By Solarina Ho
 TORONTO, Dec 14 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index
finished lower on Tuesday as heavily weighted resource and
financial issues retreated, partly pressured by a cautious
economic outlook from the Federal Reserve.
 The materials group, home to mining firms, ended down 0.21
percent and led five of the index's 10 main sectors lower.
 Fertilizer producer, Agrium Inc AGU.TO was down 1.71
percent at C$81.52, while Potash Corp POT.TO was off 0.44
percent at 138.00.
 Barrick Gold ABX.TO did not follow modestly stronger
bullion prices and fell 1.45 percent to C$53.53. [GOL/]
 "There's a lot of seasonality kicking in ... a lot of the
big institutions have pretty well shut down their books for
2010. A number of people just started their Christmas holidays,
so the market is becoming extraordinarily thin," said Irwin
Michael, portfolio manager at ABC Funds.
 "It doesn't take very much -- a stray order can move a
stock either way on the buy side or the sell side to a
significant degree."
 The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
.GSPTSE ended down 15.78 points, or 0.12 percent, at
13,280.08. The market was in positive territory most of the
day, but the Federal Reserve's cautious comments about a slow
economic recovery sparked a late-session selloff.
 The economy-linked financial issues ended the day down 0.15
percent. Royal Bank of Canada RY.TO was the most influential
decliner among the banks and gave back 0.91 percent to finish
at C$52.34.
 Energy stocks slid 0.18 percent, pulled lower by crude oil
prices that were pressured by the Fed's comments, but losses
were tempered by cold weather, which boosted heating fuel
demand. [O/R] Encana Corp ECA.TO fell 1.73 percent to
 Other decliners were consumer discretionary issues, which
fell 0.37 percent, and telecoms, which slipped 0.08 percent.
 "Right now, it's a stock-pickers market and it's individual
stocks, depending on whatever orders are coming up, that are
clearly moving the marketplace," said Michael, adding that the
overall trend was still bullish.
 In individual company news, Telus Corp, which said on
Tuesday it expected earnings and revenues to increase in 2011,
saw its shares rise 0.65 percent to C$46.71. [ID:nN14259944]
 Gold Wheaton GLW.TO, which was acquired by Franco-Nevada
FNV.TO on Monday and received a ratings upgrade by RBC
Capital Markets on Tuesday, rose 2.81 percent to C$5.13.
 Lululemon Atheletica LLL.TO shares, which have gained
more than 25 percent since the company posted strong quarterly
results last week and raised its outlook, saw investors take
some profit on Tuesday. The stock was among the lead net
losers, falling 3.14 percent to C$68.27.
 ($1=$1.01 Canadian)
 (Reporting by Solarina Ho; editing by Rob Wilson)