* TSX down 1.28 percent at 10,508.98
* U.S. dollar strength pushes commodities prices lower (Adds details, quotes)
By Jennifer Kwan
TORONTO, June 15 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index fell on Monday morning as a strong U.S. dollar pushed down commodity prices, putting the stock market’s big resource shares under pressure.
The greenback rose broadly after Russia’s finance minister expressed confidence in the currency [ID:nLF600321], helping to push oil CLc1 down to around $71 a barrel, while gold and base metals prices were also lower.
The TSX index’s energy sector was down 2.2 percent, while its mining-heavy materials group fell 1.4 percent.
The weakness in commodities was also due to a report from China that cited an influential economist as saying China’s economy will not experience a rapid recovery because it will take time to find a new growth engine to replace sagging exports.[ID:nPEK255337]
China has widely been expected to be a major driving force behind a global economic turnaround, said Francis Campeau, broker at MF Global Canada in Montreal.
“Every time China reduces growth expectations the whole world gets affected,” he said.
Another factor hurting sentiment was news the Group of Eight nations are considering how to unwind the steps they have taken to stimulate their economies, Campeau said.
“It seems that most parties are thinking about reducing bailouts so there’s less money pumped into the equation,” he said.
At 10:01 a.m. (1401 GMT), the S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE was down 135.98 points, or 1.28 percent, at 10,508.98, with nine of its 10 main sectors lower. The small health care group was unchanged.
The market, up about 40 percent from its March lows, may have risen too quickly, said John Kinsey, portfolio manager at Caldwell Securities Ltd.
“What we’ve got here is a tired market. It’s had a very good run,” he said.
Shares on the rise included Bombardier Inc (BBDb.TO), up 2.7 percent at C$3.43, and Uranium One UUU.TO, which rose 3.5 percent to C$2.93.
$1=$1.13 Canadian Reporting by Jennifer Kwan; editing by Peter Galloway