TSX ends lower as resource issues weigh

Thu Nov 12, 2009 5:32pm EST
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By Jennifer Kwan

TORONTO (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index fell on Thursday as retreating oil and gold prices sent shares of heavyweight energy and mining companies lower.

EnCana Corp was down 2.4 percent at C$59.25 and Barrick Gold sank 1.8 percent to C$44.25. Canadian Natural Resources fell 1.8 percent to C$69.47.

The broader energy and materials sectors dropped 1.4 percent and 1.7 percent respectively, as U.S. oil prices fell to below $77 a barrel, while gold edged off the record high it hit early on Thursday as the U.S. dollar recovered from recent lows.

"It's right across the board. The Canadian dollar is a little weaker on the back of the commodity market being a bit weaker, which is on the back of the U.S. dollar being stronger," said Bruce Latimer, a trader at Dundee Securities.

Investor sentiment was also slightly bruised by a guarded earnings outlook for the crucial Christmas quarter from retail giant Wal-Mart, casting doubt about the strength of consumer spending in the economic recovery.

"It certainly is a bit of a negative edge over the market," said Latimer. But he added he's seeing "some good volumes in some names," which could mean people are buying on dips.

Jennifer Radman, vice-president at Caldwell Investment Management Ltd, said the market has been a bit ahead of itself.

"People are expecting the economy to get better so any sort of warning from companies would move the market," she said.   Continued...

<p>People walk by a Bay Street sign at the financial district in Toronto, October 10, 2008. REUTERS/Mark Blinch</p>