CANADA STOCKS-TSX slides along with metal prices

Fri Oct 31, 2008 5:24pm EDT
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* TSX logs biggest monthly drop in a decade in October

* Benchmark index ends week up 5 percent

* Goldcorp, Centerra, Eldorado fall after results (Adds details)

By Jennifer Kwan

TORONTO, Oct 31 (Reuters) - Toronto Stock Exchange's main index closed nearly 100 points lower on Friday, logging its biggest monthly drop in a decade, pulled down by falling gold and base metal prices, which were pressured by a stronger U.S. dollar and demand concerns.

Among the heavyweight decliners were oil company EnCana Corp (ECA.TO: Quote), which dropped 2.3 percent to C$61.23, and miner Barrick Gold (ABX.TO: Quote), which fell 7.8 percent to C$27.56 as the energy and materials sectors retreated.

The S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE closed down 93.45 points, or 0.95 percent, at 9,762.76, with four of the index's 10 main groups lower.

The index had risen strongly in the three previous sessions thanks to firmer commodity prices and was up 5 percent on the week. For October, however, it was off 16.9 percent, its biggest monthly decline since August 1998.

The energy group was 0.5 percent lower on Friday, even though oil rebounded on a late day short-covering rally to settle up $1.85 at $67.81 a barrel. Crude ended the month down more than 32 percent, its biggest monthly fall to date. [ID:nSP407200]   Continued...