TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index was little changed on Wednesday as higher commodity prices helped bolster the natural resource sectors, offsetting negative sentiment fueled by a sluggish outlook for the global economy.
The prices of gold, silver, copper and oil edged higher, driving up the producers of those resources.
The World Bank on Tuesday trimmed its global growth forecast, saying a confluence of events, from the Ukraine crisis to unusually cold weather in the United States, dampened economic expansion in the first half of the year.
The Canadian benchmark, which recorded gains in each of the previous eight sessions, is up more than 9 percent this year.
“It speaks to the underlying sense of bullishness and the fact that investors are quite reluctant to sell in this environment,” said Elvis Picardo, strategist and vice president of research at Global Securities in Vancouver.
“I don’t think sentiment has turned for the TSX yet,” he added. “But in the absence of any major catalyst, it’s likely that we could trade sideways to a little bit lower.”
The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE closed down 12.25 points, or 0.08 percent, at 14,892.13. Five of the 10 main sectors on the index were in the red.
Financials, the index’s most heavily weighted sector, were down 0.4 percent. Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS.TO) lost 0.3 percent to C$70.63, and Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO) gave back 0.5 percent to C$74.86.
Shares of energy producers added 0.3 percent, reflecting higher oil prices. Canadian Natural Resources Ltd (CNQ.TO) rose 0.2 percent to C$46.24, and Suncor Energy Inc (SU.TO) climbed 1.3 percent to C$44.20.
Editing by Meredith Mazzilli and Diane Craft