December 15, 2010 / 10:35 PM / 7 years ago

CANADA STOCKS-TSX falls as metals prices pull back

* TSX closes down 0.4 percent to 13,229.07

* Golds, base metals lead index down (Adds details, quotes)

By Claire Sibonney

TORONTO, Dec 15 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index closed lower on Wednesday with heavyweight mining issues pressured by metal prices, which fell as the U.S. dollar rose on a return of euro zone debt concerns.

Gold miners sagged 1.8 percent as bullion retreated for the first time in three days as the greenback’s rally hurt commodities priced in U.S. dollars, and tamer inflation data more than offset safe-haven buying of the precious metal. [GOL/]

Among the biggest decliners on the index were Barrick Gold Corp (ABX.TO), down 1.5 percent at C$52.75, and Agnico Eagle (AEM.TO), off 2.7 percent at C$80.79.

Copper prices also fell, knocking base-metal miners down 1.7 percent. Teck Resources TCKb.TO ended 2.3 percent lower at C$56.54.

The U.S. dollar firmed against the euro after Moody’s said it may downgrade Spain’s debt rating and investors awaited more news on how policymakers will resolve the region’s fiscal crisis. [FRX/]

The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE closed down 51.01 points, or 0.4 percent, at 13,229.07. Five of the index’s 10 main groups were weaker, including energy, down 0.3 percent, financials, off 0.3 percent, and the technology sector, down 0.7 percent.

Investors taking profits going into the yearend were also seen having an impact on the market’s performance.

Shares of Research In Motion slipped 2.3 percent to C$59.48 ahead of the release of its earnings on Thursday. [ID:nN0379074]

Rising U.S. Treasury yields were another culprit weighing on North American market sentiment and boosting the greenback, said Youssef Zohny, associate portfolio manager at Van Arbor Asset Management. [US/]

“It’s a bit negative on the market at the moment, just because it’s going against what (U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman) Ben Bernanke is trying to do, which is lower interest rates. We’re seeing really the opposite.”

Shares of Uranium One UUU.TO slid more than 4 percent to C$4.50 after it said it has the option to buy all the shares of Mantra Resources MRU.AX, which is being acquired by Russia’s ARMZ, Uranium One’s biggest shareholder, for ARMZ’s buy price plus additional expenditures. [ID:nLDE6BE05K]

Bombardier Inc (BBDb.TO) rose 3.2 percent to C$4.80 after it rolled out its latest commercial jet on Tuesday and said it is well placed to win new business from airlines emerging from the downturn that need more efficient fleets to control costs. [ID:nN1462438]

$1=$1.00 Canadian Reporting by Claire Sibonney; editing by Peter Galloway

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