March 22, 2018 / 11:41 AM / in a month

TSX posts biggest drop since Sept 2016; trade war fears weigh

(Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index ended sharply lower on Thursday, registering its biggest one-day percentage drop since September 2016, as worries over the threat of trade wars between the United States and China rattled investors.

Businessmen pass the Toronto Stock Exchange sing in Toronto, Ontario, Canada July 6, 2017. REUTERS/Chris Helgren

U.S. President Donald Trump signed a presidential memorandum that could impose tariffs on up to $60 billion of imports from China. Trump will target the Chinese imports only after a consultation period.

U.S. stocks dropped as well, with each of the three major Wall Street indexes suffering its biggest daily percentage drop in six weeks.

The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index <.GSPTSE > fell 275.35 points, or 1.76 percent, to 15,399.93.

The TSX energy index was down 2.4 percent and among sectors with the biggest declines on the day following a decline in oil prices.

The TSX posted three new 52-week highs and nine new lows. Across all Canadian issues there were 11 new 52-week highs and 40 new lows.

The largest percentage gainer on the TSX was New Flyer Industries Inc , which rose 4.5 percent, while the largest decliner was Eldorado Gold Corp , down 11.1 percent.

Among the most active Canadian stocks by volume were Bombardier Inc , up 0.5 percent to $3.78; Aurora Cannabis Inc, down 4.5 percent to $9.63 and Eldorado Gold.

Reporting by Caroline Valetkevitch in New York; additional reporting by Medha Singh in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D'Silva and Lisa Shumaker

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