CANADA STOCKS-TSX tumbles on gold slide, regulation fears

Wed May 19, 2010 1:00pm EDT
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* TSX drops 1.25 percent to 11,617.51

* Gold issues lead broad decline

* Strength in banks helps to cut losses, insurers weak (Adds new commentary, updates prices)

By Ka Yan Ng

TORONTO, May 19 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index fell to its lowest level in more than a week on Wednesday, dragged down by battered gold and energy shares, in a retreat triggered by investor fears over Germany's move to clamp down on speculative trading.

The TSX index was down for a fifth straight session as uncertain investors worried that Germany's surprise ban on some riskier short-selling bets foreshadowed tighter financial regulation in other nations.

"It's nothing Canada-specific. It's all global macro (factors) and risk is being taken off the table," said Francis Campeau, broker at MF Global Canada in Montreal.

"It's fear, fear, fear."

Gold fell below $1,200 an ounce as the metal was caught up in a selloff in financial markets. [FRX/] [GOL/]   Continued...