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CANADA STOCKS-TSX falls with banks as Fed talks hikes; oil steadies

TORONTO, March 24 (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index ended lower on Thursday as banking stocks retreated amid increasing chatter from U.S. central bankers about hiking interest rates, while a recovery in crude oil prices helped energy stocks gain.

The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index unofficially closed down 21.37 points, or 0.16 percent, at 13,358.11. The index, which will be closed on Friday, lost 1 percent on the shortened week. (Reporting by Alastair Sharp; Editing by James Dalgleish)

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