TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index fell on Tuesday to a more than three-week low as economic news from Europe and the United States dented the safe-haven appeal of bullion and sent shares of gold miners tumbling.
Nearly every major sector was down as Canadian stocks resumed trading after Monday’s civic holiday.
Data showed German industry orders in June posted their biggest rise since October, and British manufacturing grew much more strongly than expected in June.
Meanwhile, the U.S. trade deficit hit a 3-1/2-year low in June, suggesting greater strength in the world’s largest economy.
The economic news pulled the price of bullion to a near three-week low. <GOL/>
The benchmark Canadian index, which has been battered by weakness in the price of commodities such as gold and copper, is barely in positive territory for the year.
“The TSX is struggling here. There’s very little appetite for commodity stocks,” said Elvis Picardo, strategist and vice president of research at Global Securities in Vancouver.
“This selloff in commodities has been quite broad-based” and has a lot to do with sluggish economic growth in China, he said, adding that recent weak quarterly earnings reports have also pressured resource stocks.
The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE closed down 133.93 points, or 1.06 percent, at 12,469.32, after reaching 12,419.04, its lowest since July 11.
“There’s still enough basic nervousness in the market that people are just as quick to pull the trigger as they ever were,” said David Cockfield, managing director and portfolio manager at Northland Wealth Management.
Nine of the 10 main sectors on the index were in the red.
Financials, the index’s most heavily weighted sector, lost 0.5 percent. Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO), the country’s biggest lender, gave back 0.6 percent to C$64.04.
The materials sector, which includes mining stocks, stumbled 3.6 percent, with gold miners down 6.1 percent.
Goldcorp Inc (G.TO) slipped 6.2 percent to C$26.26 and had the biggest negative influence on the market. Barrick Gold Corp ABX.TO declined 6.5 percent to C$16.25.
Shares of energy companies slid 1.1 percent, reflecting a fall in the price of oil. <O/R>
The only major group to climb was the information technology sector, up 1.9 percent, thanks to a 6.9 percent jump in shares of BlackBerry (BB.TO).
Options traders reported a lot of action in Blackberry stock.
Editing by Leslie Adler