CANADA STOCKS-Rout continues as TSX slides to 2015 low

Thu Aug 20, 2015 12:01pm EDT
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(Updates market action and adds analyst's comments)

* TSX down 166.53 points, or 1.19 percent, at 13,870.1

* Nine of the TSX's 10 main groups fall

By Solarina Ho

TORONTO, Aug 20 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index sank more than 1 percent on Thursday, hitting the lowest level of the year, as investor concern about prospects for global economic growth continued to cast a pall over markets.

The TSX index was on track for its ninth decline in 11 sessions, with most of its main sectors giving up 1 to 2 percent by late morning.

"It's really, really ugly," said Paul Taylor, chief investment officer of asset allocation at BMO Asset Management. "The global economic backdrop is not particularly robust. And Canada's just getting crushed by oil."

Royal Bank of Canada was among the heaviest drags on the index, shedding 1.8 percent to C$74.37. Toronto-Dominion Bank was not far behind, declining 1.1 percent to C$51.38.

The index's hefty financial group, which has been squeezed by a low interest rate environment and its close ties with commodities-related companies, retreated 1.2 percent. Banks are also coming into the spotlight ahead of quarterly earnings reports next week.   Continued...