CANADA STOCKS-Resources hit as Ukraine, China fears pull TSX lower

Tue Mar 11, 2014 4:59pm EDT
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* TSX down 34.83 points, or 0.24 percent, at 14,267.23
    * Eight of 10 main index sectors decline
    * Prices of oil, copper drop on China credit concerns
    * CP Rail slips after share buyback plan

    By John Tilak
    TORONTO, March 11 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index
slipped on Tuesday, led by declines in natural resource shares,
as worries about the political crisis in Ukraine and fears of
credit instability in China weighed on investor sentiment.
    Investors were concerned about the potential impact China's
first domestic bond default might have on financing deals in the
copper market. 
    As a result, the London copper benchmark dropped to
a three-year low. In Toronto, shares of diversified miner Teck
Resources Ltd slumped 3.5 percent. 
    Ukraine's interim leaders formed a new National Guard and
appealed to the United States and Britain for assistance against
what they called Russian aggression in Crimea. 
    Those worries sent investors scurrying for safety in
commodities such as bullion, which climbed and helped send
shares of gold producers higher.
    Gains in the gold-mining sector, which is up about 28
percent this year, have fueled the broader Canadian market in
recent weeks. The benchmark index has gained about 5 percent in
2014, outperforming the S&P 500. 
    "The market is just taking a breather," said Paul Taylor,
chief investment officer at BMO Asset Management. 
    "I don't know where it would take its direction from for the
next 6 to 8 weeks," he added. "We might be in a holding pattern
until we get through March and April and see what the economic
data at that point looks like."
    The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
 closed down 34.83 points, or 0.24 percent, at
    Eight of the 10 main sectors on the index were in the red.
    Energy shares gave back 1.2 percent, reflecting weakness in
the price of U.S. crude oil. Canadian Natural Resources Ltd
 lost 1.9 percent and had the biggest negative influence
on the market. 
    In the gold-mining sector, Goldcorp Inc added 0.6
percent to C$29.76, and Barrick Gold Corp climbed 0.4
percent to C$21.99. 
    Financials, the index's most heavily weighted sector, rose
0.8 percent, with Toronto Dominion Bank rising 1.1
percent to C$51.54 and Bank of Montreal advancing 1.1
percent to C$73.10.
    In corporate news, Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd said
it planned to buy back up to 5.3 million shares over the next
    The stock slipped 0.9 percent to C$169.76, pulling down the
broader industrial group