June 14, 2013 / 12:37 PM / 5 years ago

Fed fears pull TSX lower; banks lead retreat

TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index retreated on Friday, ending its third-straight losing week as financials and materials stocks led a broad selloff.

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

Bank shares were the biggest drag on the index as investors digested U.S. economic data and fretted about a possible rollback in central bank stimulus programs.

The index fell following a sharp jump in the previous session and remained firmly in the red for the year.

The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE ended down 89.77 points, or 0.73 percent, at 12,187.36. Nine of the 10 TSX subgroups lost ground.

Financials, the index’s most heavily weighted sector, lost 0.74 percent. Toronto-Dominion Bank(TD.TO) played the biggest role in leading the index lower, dropping 1.1 percent to $81.32. Royal Bank of Canada(RY.TO), the country’s biggest lender, fell 0.94 percent, ending the week at C$59.99.

The materials sector, which includes mining stocks, declined 1.58 percent. The price of gold rose on Friday and ended the week above its Monday open, but gold-mining stocks still suffered. Goldcorp Inc. (G.TO) was down almost 2.5 percent at C$28.21, and Kinross Gold(K.TO) fell 3.1 percent to C$5.92. <GOL/>

“It seems that this market, when it gets a bit nervous, they go in and whack the financials and the materials,” said David Cockfield, portfolio manager at Northland Wealth Management. “Gold is up but gold stocks are down. The market is continuing to exhibit all sort of characteristics that are less than rational.”

U.S. producer prices rose more than expected in May as gasoline and food prices rebounded, but underlying inflation pressures remained muted, which could argue against an early scaling back of monetary stimulus by the U.S. Federal Reserve.

Fed officials will meet on Tuesday and Wednesday to discuss the future of the central bank’s $85 billion a month bond-buying program.

Grocery giant Metro (MRU.TO) had the biggest positive influence on the market, gaining 2.15 percent to close at C$68.84. Earlier this week rival grocer Empire (EMPa.TO), owner of the Sobeys chain, bid to acquire American chain Safeway’s Canadian operation.

Department store chain Sears Canada Inc. rose almost 14 percent to C$10.76 on news the company will close at least two and perhaps more of its prime Toronto locations, selling back the leases for C$191 million.

($1=$1.02 Canadian)

Editing by Dan Grebler

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