October 10, 2014 / 11:44 AM / in 3 years

TSX hits six-month low, gripped by global growth fears

TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index recorded its biggest drop in more than a year and hit a six-month low on Friday as worries about global economic growth hit shares in every major market sector.

A man walks past an old Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) sign in Toronto, June 23, 2014. REUTERS/Mark Blinch

With the export-oriented Canadian market and its commodity sectors increasingly focused on the prospects for the global economy, sluggish data from Germany and a bearish forecast from the International Monetary Fund this week have raised red flags.

Shares of energy producers, which have been under pressure for the past three months as oil prices have fallen, were among the biggest heavyweight decliners on the Toronto stock market’s benchmark TSX index.

The index dropped in four of the five trading sessions this week and has shed about 9 percent since reaching a record high last month.

“You could say the markets go up like escalators and go down like elevators,” said Matt Skipp, president of SW8 Asset Management. “You could put this down as the inevitable correction.”

He said the Canadian equity market is overvalued in the context of worries about the global economy.

The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE closed down 233.24 points, or 1.61 percent, at 14,227.36. All 10 main sectors on the index were in the red.

The index at one point hit 14,188.75, its lowest level since late March.

Among energy shares, Suncor Energy Inc SU.TO gave back 2.3 percent to C$36.66 and Canadian Natural Resources Ltd CNQ.TO lost 1.5 percent to C$38.48.

Industrials shed 2.7 percent. Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd CP.TO fell 4.7 percent to C$212.20, and Canadian National Railway Co CNR.TO was down 3 percent at C$72.25.

Shares in several Canadian medical marijuana companies on the small-cap TSX Venture Exchange fell after Reuters reported that the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration was interested in U.S. investors in Canadian marijuana firms.

OrganiGram Holdings Inc OGI.V dropped 3.5 percent, Bedrocan Cannabis Corp BED.V fell 5.6 percent, Tweed Marijuana Inc TWD.V declined 6.1 percent, and Mettrum Health Corp MT.V slipped 10.8 percent.

Editing by Peter Galloway and Chris Reese

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