March 5, 2012 / 3:43 PM / 7 years ago

CANADA STOCKS-TSX falls as China, Europe worries weigh

* TSX down 82.05 points, or 0.65 pct, at 12,561.77

* China cuts 2012 growth target to 8-year low

* Europe private sector data sours mood

* Enbridge shares fall after U.S. oil line shutdown

* PDAC mining company to attract market attention

By Jennifer Kwan

TORONTO, March 5 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index joined global markets in falling on Monday morning after China cut its 2012 economic growth target to an eight-year low and new economic data raised expectations of a recession in Europe.

World stocks fell and the euro touched two-week lows after figures showed a sharp downturn in purchasing activity in February among Italian and Spanish businesses, while Germany slowed and France stalled.

Fears of weakening markets pushed down Toronto’s resource shares. Leading the index lower was Potash Corp of Saskatchewan , down 1.2 percent at C$45.60, Suncor Energy, down 1.4 percent at C$34.95, and Goldcorp, which fell 1.2 percent to C$47.97 as oil and metals prices sank. .

Shares started weakening in Asia early in the day after China’s premier, Wen Jiabao, speaking during the country’s annual parliamentary session, said the government had cut the nation’s growth target to an eight-year low of 7.5 percent for 2012 to give the giant economy room to slow down.

“It implies lower growth globally, whether it’s China or Europe, and that would in turn could lead to lower growth in North America and therefore lower prices for resources,” Gavin Graham, president at Graham Investment Strategy, said of the headlines.

At 10:15 a.m. (1515 GMT), the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index was down 82.05 points, or 0.65 percent, at 12,561.77. Nine of its 10 main sectors were lower. Telecoms were up 0.1 percent.

Cushioning the fall was data that showed the pace of growth in the U.S. service sector unexpectedly rose in February to its highest level in a year. But it was not enough to overcome the broader global concerns, Graham said.

Enbridge fell 0.7 percent to C$38.01. A key segment of the company’s oil pipeline system in the U.S. Midwest will remain shut down for up to four more days after a deadly vehicle accident in Illinois caused an oil leak and fire, likely squeezing supplies for refiners in the region, the company said on Sunday.

Market observers will also be closely watching the annual Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada convention in Toronto where exploration companies will be actively touting their assets to investors and larger producers.

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