CANADA STOCKS-TSX slips lower as golds weigh; ends up on week

Fri Oct 15, 2010 4:53pm EDT
 
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   * TSX slips 0.08 percent to 12,609.07; up 0.6 pct on week
 * Weak resources outweigh 7 advancing sectors
 * Bernanke offers few new details on U.S. stimulus steps
 (Adds details)
 TORONTO, Oct 15 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index
finished lower for a second straight session on Friday as
modest gains across most sectors were not enough to offset the
drag from investors cutting gold positions.
 The index was volatile in early action as market players
digested a speech by U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben
Bernanke, which offered few new details on further economic
stimulus. [ID:nN15187998]
 But the volatility washed away in end-of-session trading
with the index holding near the unchanged mark into the close
as market players reset ahead of the onslaught of earnings
expected in the next several weeks.
 "We rarely have the market take off on a Friday and this is
pretty typical," said Peter Chandler, senior vice-president at
Canaccord Wealth Management in Waterloo, Ontario.
 "We're at the beginning of the earnings season and so the
market needs to get some sort of a gauge as to whether equities
are fairly valued, under- or overvalued here. There's been a
very strong market performance."
 The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
.GSPTSE finished down 10.62 points, or 0.08 percent, at
12,609.07, but notched a weekly gain of 0.6 percent. It was the
index's fourth straight weekly gain.
 Seven of the TSX's 10 main sectors were higher, but the
materials group, home to gold miners, lost 0.7 percent. Energy
was also 0.2 percent lower.
 Gold miners fell on a retreating bullion price while Potash
Corp POT.TO dropped on a report that China's Sinochem would
not make a takeover bid for the company. [ID:nN22340110]
 The gold subsector skidded 0.66 percent after the price of
the precious metal snapped its two-day record-setting rally, as
the U.S. dollar rebounded following Bernanke's speech. He said
that high U.S. unemployment and low inflation point to a need
for further economic stimulus.
 "It looks like a lot of the fears of a very aggressive Fed
turned into a little bit more of a cautious tone from Mr.
Bernanke," said Youssef Zohny, associate portfolio manager at
Van Arbor Asset Management in Vancouver.
 Barrick Gold Corp ABX.TO, the world's No. 1 producer, was
down 1.14 percent at C$48.53, while Goldcorp fell 0.82 percent
to C$44.99. Yamana Gold YRI.TO shed 2.48 percent to C$11.42.
[GOL/]
 Potash Corp fell nearly 1 percent to C$146.78 after sources
told Reuters that Sinochem had abandoned efforts to counter BHP
Billiton's BHP.AX $39 billion bid. [ID:nLDE69E01U]
 A handful of U.S. earnings this week mostly buoyed market
sentiment about other results to come, though worries about the
U.S. foreclosure crisis weighed.
 A pickup in Canada's earnings begins next week and the TSX
may tread softly until investors have a better gauge of
profitability and company outlook.
 "I would say we're in a digestion phase here where the
market probably is more likely to trend sideways, and try to
hang on and consolidate some of this sharp move up that we've
seen," said Chandler.
 ($1=$1.01 Canadian)
 (Reporting by Ka Yan Ng; editing by Rob Wilson)