CANADA STOCKS-TSX dives as Bernanke comments rattle markets

Wed Jul 21, 2010 4:50pm EDT
 
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 * TSX down 116.55 points, or 1 percent, at 11,513.33
 * Bernanke calls recovery "unusually uncertain"
 * Nine of TSX's 10 main groups drop
 (Adds details, quote)
 TORONTO, July 21 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index
fell sharply on Wednesday after U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman
Ben Bernanke said the U.S. economy faces "unusually uncertain"
prospects.
 Bernanke said policymakers believe the U.S. economy is
still on the path to recovery, but that the Fed is ready to
take further steps to bolster growth if needed.
[ID:nWALLIE6DU]
 His remarks to the U.S. Senate banking committee added to
investor jitters about a sluggish economic recovery, helping to
push down North American equities. [.N]
 In Canada, big names on the downside included Royal Bank of
Canada RY.TO, off 2.9 percent at C$52.00, and
Toronto-Dominion Bank TD.TO, down 1.6 percent at C$70.55.
 "It's all about the outlook being 'unusually uncertain.'
This is not the environment to put risk on. It's a perfect
environment to duck and cover," said Francis Campeau, broker at
MF Global Canada in Montreal.
 Suncor Energy SU.TO was down 1.8 percent at C$32.54, and
Canadian Natural Resources CNQ.TO fell 1.6 percent to C$35.92
as oil prices fell, due in part to data showing U.S. crude
inventories rose unexpectedly last week. [O/R]
 The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
.GSPTSE finished the session down 116.55 points, or 1
percent, at 11,513.33. Nine of the index's 10 main groups
skidded.
 The index's heavily weighted energy and financials sectors
led the slide, down 1.2 percent and 1.9 percent, respectively.
The lone sector in the black was consumer staples, up 0.3
percent.
 Encana Corp ECA.TO, Canada's biggest natural gas
producer, was down 4.6 percent at C$32.90 after reporting a
quarterly loss, hurt partly by commodity hedging.
[ID:nSGE66K0ES]
 "Encana coming out this morning with not so great news so I
think that really took the wind out of the TSX's sail," said
Serge Pepin, head of investments at BMO Investments Inc.
 As well, Pepin said a robust quarterly report from Apple
Inc AAPL.O hurt Research In Motion RIM.TO, which was off
3.1 percent at C$55.94.
 The blue chip S&P/TSX 60 index .TSE60 closed 8.61 points,
or 1.26 percent, lower at 673.15.
 Teck Resources TCKb.TO rose 2.4 percent to C$35.14, and
Bombardier Inc BBDb.TO rose 2.8 percent to C$4.78.
 ($1=$1.05 Canadian)
 (Reporting by Jennifer Kwan; editing by Peter Galloway)