November 22, 2010 / 4:18 PM / 7 years ago

CANADA STOCKS-Weaker banks, euro zone worries drag TSX lower

   * TSX down 58.95 points, or 0.46 pct at C$12,896.38
 * Six of TSX’s 10 main groups lower
 * Financials down, fertilizer producers up
 By Solarina Ho
 TORONTO, Nov 22 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index skidded lower on Monday morning as market sentiment remained cautious over euro zone debt worries and ahead of Canadian bank earnings.
 The influential financial group was 0.9 percent lower with Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO) off 0.8 percent at C$54.89 and Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD.TO) down 0.65 percent at C$74.32.
 “We’re still a little bit ahead of the bank earnings, so given what has gone on elsewhere in the financial services sector, there’s a little bit of anticipation about what might translate in the banking sector when they release their results, although they are generally expected to be not too bad,” said Peter Chandler, a senior vice-president and director at Canaccord Wealth Management.
 Manulife Financial Corp (MFC.TO) shares were off 4.5 percent at C$14.66 after Citigroup downgraded Canada’s largest insurer to “sell”, citing a weak outlook for its U.S. operation and the risk of dilution from further equity issuance. [ID:nSGE6AL0OV]
 At 10:35 a.m. (1535 GMT) the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE was down 58.95 points, or 0.46 percent to C$12,896.38.
 Six of the TSX’s 10 main groups were negative.
 The market opened lower, but turned positive shortly after the open, and remained little changed before retreating once more by midmorning.
 “More often than not, our markets don’t take off on a bold course of direction on a holiday-shortened week and in the absence of the U.S. market,” said Chandler.
 U.S. markets will be closed on Thursday for Thanksgiving, which typically means a quiet trading day on Friday as well.
 Last week’s optimism over a multibillion-euro loan package for debt-laden Ireland waned as concerns that the debt crisis might spread to other euro zone countries weighed on market sentiment.
 Fertilizer companies Agrium Inc (AGU.TO) and Potash Corp (POT.TO) were among the top five movers to the upside, following news of a takeover in the sector.
 German potash producer K+S SDFG.DE said Monday morning it would buy Vancouver-based Potash One KCL.TO in a friendly C$434 million deal, which sent the junior miner’s shares up 25 percent to C$4.54.[ID:nN22270264]
 Agrium stock was up 2.7 percent at C$84.17 while Potash Corp up 0.85 percent to C$144.04.
 ($1=$1.02 Canadian) (Reporting by Solarina Ho) ((solarina.ho@thomsonreuters.com;+1 416 941 8067; Reuters Messaging: solarina.ho.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net)) ============================================================== FOR CANADIAN MARKETS NEWS, CLICK ON CODES IN BRACKETS: TSX market report..........[.TO] Canadian dollar and bonds report....[CAD/][CA/] Top News: Canada ......[TOP/CAN] Today in Canada.......[CA/DIARY] Canada earnings schedule..............[CA/CORP] Canadian company news .. [E-CAN] Reuters global stocks poll (Canada). [EPOLL/CA] FOR CANADIAN MARKETS DATA, CLICK ON CODES IN BRACKETS: Canadian Equities speed guide.......<CA/EQUITY> S&P/TSX Composite index ...............GSPTSE S&P/TSE Venture composite index .......SPCDNX TSX most active..........AV.TO Venture Exchange most active.............AV.V Top TSX pct gainers......PG.TO Top TSX pct losers.......PL.TO S&P/TSX 60 index ........TSE60 52 week highs:
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