May 23 (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index dropped for a second day on Thursday, as prices of crude, one of the country’s major exports, tumbled and pressured energy stocks.
* At 9:48 a.m. ET (13:48 GMT), the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index was down 154.58 points, or 0.95%, at 16,172.77.
* Global shares slipped on Thursday as concerns grew that the China-U.S. trade conflict was fast turning into a technology cold war.
* Meanwhile, data showed Canadian wholesale trade increased more than expected in March.
* The energy sector dropped 4.1%, leading declines among the 11 major S&P sectors.
* U.S. crude prices were down 3.8% a barrel, while Brent crude lost 3.2%, extending falls from the previous session amid surging U.S. crude inventories and the ongoing trade worries that weighed on the demand outlook.
* The financials sector slipped 0.8%. Royal Bank of Canada and Toronto-Dominion Bank beat analysts’ estimates for quarterly profits, bolstered by strong loan growth.
* RBS shares were up 1.2% while Toronto-Dominion fell 1.7%.
* The materials sector, which includes precious and base metals miners and fertilizer companies, edged higher. Gold prices rose as a slide in equities spurred demand for the safe-haven bullion.
* On the TSX, 49 issues were higher, while 192 issues declined for a 3.92-to-1 ratio to the downside, with 28.15 million shares traded.
* The largest percentage gainer on the TSX was Firstservice Corp, which jumped 4.9% after deal to buy Global Restoration Holdings. Miners Iamgold Corp and New Gold Inc rose more than 2%.
* Meg Energy Corp fell 7.5%, the most on the TSX. The second biggest decliner was Crescent Point Energy Corp , down 6.5%.
* The most heavily traded shares by volume were Stornoway Diamond Corp, Aurora Cannabis Inc.
* The TSX posted six new 52-week highs and 15 new lows.
* Across all Canadian issues there were 13 new 52-week highs and 28 new lows, with total volume of 51.21 million shares. (Reporting by Medha Singh in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila)