April 13, 2010 / 3:01 PM / 9 years ago

CANADA STOCKS-TSX tumbles as commodities, Alcoa weigh

* TSX down 101.46 points at 12,047.20

* Materials, energy lead index lower

By Claire Sibonney

TORONTO, April 13 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index extended its losses on Tuesday morning after a soft earnings report from U.S. aluminum giant Alcoa (AA.N) raised fears of a slow economic recovery and commodity prices weakened.

The materials sector dropped 1.5 percent, pressured by easing gold and base metal prices. Barrick Gold Corp (ABX.TO), the world’s biggest producer, fell 2.2 percent to C$39.99, while Teck Resources TCKb.TO skidded 1.3 percent to C$44.83. [GOL/] [MET/L]

“The materials sector in particular is fairly negative due to Alcoa’s earnings yesterday,” said Youssef Zohny, associate portfolio manager at Van Arbor Asset Management in Vancouver.

“Alcoa is a great signal and a great gauge on the economic recovery. A lot of their goods have to do with economic sensitive goods that consumers and businesses use, so to see their top line sales disappoint a little bit, I think is definitely affecting the economically sensitive companies slightly,” Zohny said.

On Monday, Alcoa kicked off earnings season with its fifth net loss in the past six quarters. When charges were excluded the earnings met Wall Street estimates, though revenues missed expectations. [ID:nLDE63C01X]

Oil prices fell on Tuesday for the fifth straight session to below $84 a barrel, sending the energy sector down more than 1 percent. [O/R]

Suncor Energy Inc (SU.TO), Canada’s biggest oil company, dropped 1.7 percent to C$34.57, while Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO) slid 0.9 percent to C$77.98.

“I think oil got a little bit ahead of itself,” said Zohny. “It’s come to the point where high oil prices are becoming potentially a drag on the economy so a lot of people are paying attention to that and potentially affecting demand as well.”

At 10:24 a.m. (1424 GMT), the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE was down 101.46 points, or 0.84 percent, at 12,047.20. Eight of its 10 main sectors were lower.

Technology and industrial stocks were flat to slightly higher, bucking the broader trend.

BlackBerry maker Research In Motion RIM.TO gained 1.9 percent to C$72.09 amid acquisition talks surrounding rival smartphone maker Palm Inc PALM.O. [ID:nTOE63C070]

$1=$1.00 Canadian Reporting by Claire Sibonney; editing by Rob Wilson

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