Toronto stock index dips on energy, telecoms

Tue Jul 29, 2008 10:04am EDT
 
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TORONTO, July 29 (Reuters) - The Toronto Stock Exchange's main index opened lower on Monday, weighed by energy and telecom shares, overshadowing news that Teck Cominco (TCKb.TO: Quote) plans to buy Fording Canadian Coal Trust FDG_u.TO in a $14.1 billion deal.

Shortly after the open, the S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE was down 36.52 points, or 0.27 percent, at 13,287.44, with four of its 10 main subgroups lower.

Energy stocks slipped 1.4 percent, along with the price of oil, on demand concerns, while telecoms fell 2 percent.

On the upside, the heavily-weighted financials rose 0.5 percent despite news late on Monday that Merrill Lynch & Co Inc MER.N had plans for a $5.7 billion third-quarter write-down and would issue new stock.

Teck Cominco said on Tuesday it would buy Fording Canadian Coal Trust in a cash and stock deal worth $14.1 billion which would double its exposure to the lucrative metallurgical coal market.

Shares of Teck rose 0.6 percent to C$40.67, while Fording shares leapt 8.6 percent to C$91.00. ($1=$1.02 Canadian) (Reporting by Jennifer Kwan; Editing by Bernadette Baum)