February 27, 2020 / 3:02 PM / in 4 months

CANADA STOCKS-Toronto stocks at near 5-month low on rising coronavirus pandemic fears

(Adds details, updates prices)

Feb 27 (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index hit a near five-month low on Thursday as the coronavirus’ spread outside China ratcheted up risk aversion, while gold miners benefited from higher prices.

* At 9:38 a.m. ET (14:38 GMT), the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index was down 290.11 points, or 1.7%, at 16,751.81.

* The number of new infections in China was for the first time overtaken by fresh cases elsewhere, sending equity markets into a tailspin as investors rushed to safe havens.

* All of the major 11 subindexes were in the red, with financials leading losses.

* On the TSX, 18 issues were higher, while 212 issues declined for a 11.78-to-1 ratio to the downside, with 30.35 million shares traded.

* Oil prices fell nearly 3% on Thursday, plunging for a fifth day to their lowest since January 2019 as the fast-spreading virus cast a shadow on global economy and demand for crude.

* Vermilion Energy fell 11.0%, the most on the TSX, while the second biggest decliner was Ballard Power, down 10.4%.

* The largest percentage gainers on the TSX were Alacer Gold Corp, which jumped 2.1%, and Centerra Gold, which rose 1.5% as gold prices rose on sustained safe-haven demand.

* The most heavily traded stock by volumes was Aurora Cannabis.

* The TSX posted no new 52-week highs and 46 new lows.

* Across all Canadian issues, there were nine new 52-week highs and 148 new lows, with total volume of 55.98 million shares.

Reporting by Ambar Warrick in Bengaluru; Editing by Ramakrishnan M.

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