CANADA STOCKS-TSX falls as golds drop; financials bright spot

Fri Sep 18, 2009 10:54am EDT
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* TSX falls 0.1 percent to 11,517.04

* Gold biggest drag on broader index, hits materials group

* Financials extends rally to seventh session (Adds details, comments)

TORONTO, Sept 18 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index fell on Friday morning as commodity prices weakened and profit-taking continued after the market's recent gains.

Gold miners were among the chief decliners, dragging down the materials component 0.82 percent, largely as the price of gold backed away from 18-month highs.

Barrick Gold ABX.TO led all influential decliners, down 2.2 percent at C$39.77, followed by Goldcorp G.TO, down 1.8 percent at C$44.18. Kinross K.TO was off 1.8 percent at C$23.96.

The oil and gas sector weakened 0.42 percent as the price of crude slipped below $72 a barrel, hitting big names such as Canadian Natural Resources CNQ.TO, down 0.9 percent, and EnCana ECA.TO, down 1 percent.

"Overall, I think it's just a day when the Canadian market is taking a little bit of a pause here and people are reflecting on the strength of the recovery," said Michael Sprung, president of Sprung & Co. Investment Counsel.

At 10:37 a.m. (1437 GMT), the S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE was down 11.19 points, or 0.1 percent, at 11,517.04. The move extended Thursday's decline, when the TSX slid 0.24 percent as investors decided to take profits after five straight sessions of gains.

On the upside on Friday, the financials group added to its six straight days of gains, rising 0.5 percent. Manulife Financial MFC.TO, up 2.4 percent to C$22.69, was the top advancer, followed by Royal Bank of Canada RY.TO, up 0.6 percent at C$57.48.

($1=$1.07 Canadian) (Reporting by Ka Yan Ng; editing by Rob Wilson)