Gold knocks down TSX but oil limits loss

Thu Oct 15, 2009 5:21pm EDT
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By Ka Yan Ng

TORONTO (Reuters) - The TSX fell moderately on Thursday on lower gold prices and disappointing U.S. earnings news, but advances in the oil and gas group limited the decline.

Gold-mining shares were among the hardest hit. Barrick Gold led all heavyweight decliners with a 2.03 percent drop to C$40.15.

After a sharp rally that took it to record highs in the last two sessions, the gold price dropped 1 percent on Thursday as the U.S. dollar stemmed recent losses.

Kinross Gold fell 1.7 percent to C$23.66, while Agnico-Eagle shed 2.1 percent to C$72.66.

Banks and insurers helped keep the main index pinned lower after quarterly results from a pair of big U.S. banks disheartened investors. Manulife Financial lost 1.2 percent to C$22.21.

Royal Bank of Canada shares were the biggest drag on the main index early on, but they managed to finish up 0.04 percent at C$55.96.

Quarterly results from Goldman Sachs Group and Citigroup Inc failed to live up to the expectations of some investors after a strong showing by JPMorgan on Wednesday.

"We had a couple today that didn't knock the lights out and so the market, after you've had the kind of runs like we've had of late, the market does look for excuses on a short-term basis to sell off," said Peter Chandler, senior vice-president at Canaccord Wealth Management.   Continued...

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