Toronto stocks sag 170 pts, but end higher on week

Fri Mar 28, 2008 5:04pm EDT
 
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By Wojtek Dabrowski

TORONTO (Reuters) - The Toronto Stock Exchange's main index closed more than 170 points lower on Friday as weakness in the key energy, financials and materials sectors dragged on the benchmark lower, despite gains by BlackBerry maker Research In Motion Ltd.

The S&P/TSX composite index closed down 171.99 points, or 1.28 percent, at 13,233.79.

Even though Friday's session ended in the red, the TSX still finished the week 3.6 percent higher.

"All things considered, this has been a pretty decent week for the TSX," said Elvis Picardo, investment strategist at Northern Securities Inc in Vancouver.

The three pillars that support the TSX all gave way in Friday's session, as energy dropped 1.04 percent, financials shed 2.8 percent and the resource-laden materials group eased 0.74 percent.

RIM was one of few standout gainers, adding C$2.55, or 2.23 percent, to finish at C$117.07, ahead of its earnings report, due on Wednesday.

Software maker Corel Corp jumped late in the day after news that its majority shareholder was seeking to buy the shares it doesn't already own. The stock rose C$1.45, or 14.5 percent, to C$11.45.

Meanwhile, U.S. recession worries and other concerns about the wellbeing of the economy continue to weigh on investors' minds and will likely lead to a downward trend on the TSX for the first few weeks in April, Picardo said.   Continued...

 
<p>A Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) logo is seen in Toronto November 9, 2007. REUTERS/Mark Blinch</p>