February 13, 2009 / 9:54 PM / 10 years ago

CANADA STOCKS-TSX pulled lower by financials, materials

* TSX sheds 3.7 percent for the week

* Information technology leads TSX lower, RIM weighs

* Financials slip 2.4 percent as U.S. bank doubt hits

(Adds details, quote, updates figures)

TORONTO, Feb 13 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index fell on Friday, dragged lower by financial services stocks on persisting worries about the health of the U.S. banking sector, while materials shares dropped as the price of gold softened.

The resource-laden index capped the week down 3.7 percent after logging two straight weekly gains.

The information technology group dropped 2.7 percent, leading the downside on a percentage basis, as Research in Motion Ltd RIM.TO slumped 4.8 percent to C$60.05.

Financial shares, down 2.4 percent, remained under pressure from big insurers Manulife Financial (MFC.TO) and Sun Life Financial (SLF.TO), which reported weak results on Thursday. Manulife fell 3.7 percent to C$17.53, while Sun Life fell 4.5 percent to C$22.10.

Broader worries over the U.S. banking sector also hit the heavily-weighted sector, said Lex Kerkovius, senior research analyst at McLean & Partners Wealth Management Ltd., in Calgary.

The market is awaiting further detail on the U.S. bank rescue plan, unveiled earlier this week.

“That’s carrying over from the U.S. to Canada as well,” he said. “We’re waiting for some kind of announcement out of the government.”

The concerns appeared to overcome news that the U.S. government would announce a plan next week to prop up the housing sector by helping homeowners avoid foreclosures.

As well, the market is awaiting any news from the meeting of the Group of Seven finance ministers in Rome, said Kerkovius,.

“Everyone wants to see some concrete action on the part of the U.S. Treasury,” he said. “They want to see some concrete action on the part of other members of the G7.”

The S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE was down 100.68, or 1.15 percent, to 8,678.10, with seven of the index’s main groups were lower.

Other stocks pressuring the index included Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO), down 3.1 percent at C$29.80, and Barrick Gold (ABX.TO), which dropped 3.8 percent to C$46.70.

The energy sector rose 0.3 percent as oil CLc1 rallied on stimulus optimism, settling $3.53 higher at $37.51. [ID:nSP153908] ($1=$1.23 Canadian) (Reporting by Jennifer Kwan; Editing by Jeffrey Hodgson)

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