UPDATE 3-Toronto stocks yanked sharply lower by resources

Tue Jun 24, 2008 4:56pm EDT
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(Refiles to fix typo in headline) (Updates closing numbers, adds details, quotes)

* TSX slumps more than 280 points or nearly 2 percent

* Energy sector leads slide amid demand concerns

* Consumer shares hurt by worries over spending outlook

TORONTO, June 24 (Reuters) - The Toronto Stock Exchange's main index shed nearly 2 percent on Tuesday, dragged down by skidding resource issues amid investor concerns over the long-term prospects for oil demand.

A see-saw session for crude prices provided scant support for the benchmark, as oil finally settled up 26 cents at $137.00 a barrel amid worries over supply disruptions in Nigeria and increasing tensions between Israel and Iran.

On Bay Street, the energy sector tumbled 3.2 percent, with Canadian Natural Resources CNQ.TO falling C$3.60, or 3.5 percent, to C$100.10 and Suncor Energy SU.TO down C$3.67, or 5.7 percent, at C$61.31.

"I think the anticipation is that there will be some sort of drop in demand," said Adrian Mastracci, portfolio manager and president of KCM Wealth Management Inc. in Vancouver.

Mastracci also noted that there is still a disconnect between energy stocks and the price of oil, as the sector's shares have not risen as quickly, or as high as the commodity.   Continued...