April 14, 2009 / 6:35 PM / 10 years ago

CANADA STOCKS-Slumping energy pulls TSX off 3-month high

* TSX down 76.21 points at 9,209.41

* Energy sector down 2.4 percent

* Skid follows 5-week TSX rally (Adds comments and details)

By Frank Pingue

TORONTO, April 14 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index fell on Tuesday after earlier hitting a three-month high, as lower oil prices pulled down the heavily weighted energy sector.

Oil is a key Canadian export and its price often dictates direction for the TSX index’s energy component, which was down 2.4 percent, the steepest drop among sectors in lower territory.

Shares of EnCana (ECA.TO), Canada’s biggest energy company, fell 3 percent to C$54.55 and were the biggest drag on the overall index, while Suncor Energy (SU.TO) shares dropped 4 percent to C$30.69.

At 2:05 p.m. (1805 GMT), the S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE was down 76.21 points, or 0.82 percent, at 9,209.41.

The index had earlier reached 9330.61, its highest level since January 7.

The slide in the TSX did not spur much concern among market watchers as the index entered the session up 24 percent from the multi-year low hit in early March.

“We’ve just got a little profit taking because Canada had been on a nice run for the past few days and weeks,” said Bruce Latimer, trader at Dundee Securities. “But the earnings in the U.S. are the focus here, that’s driving New York and Canada is just following along.”

U.S. equities were also lower given data there that showed an unexpected drop in retail sales and as investors awaited the onslaught of quarterly corporate earnings due in the coming weeks. [ID:nN14439273]

Seven of the TSX’s 10 subindexes were in lower territory.

The heavily-weighted financials index straddled the break-even level, up a wafer-thin 0.03 percent, after news that U.S. investment bank Goldman Sachs (GS.N) reported a profit that was higher than expected late on Monday. [ID:nN13387020]

$1=$1.21 Canadian Editing by Jeffrey Hodgson

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