October 15, 2010 / 3:09 PM / in 7 years

CANADA STOCKS-TSX drops on Potash disappointment, lower gold

 *TSX down 68.35 points at 12,551.34
 *Eight of 10 sectors weaker
 (Adds details, commentary)
 By Claire Sibonney
 TORONTO, Oct 15 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index
retreated on Friday morning as gold miners fell on a lower
bullion price and Potash Corp POT.TO dropped on a report that
China's Sinochem will not make a takeover bid for the company.
 The gold subsector declined 1.1 percent after the price of
the safe-haven precious metal slipped below $1,370 an ounce in
volatile trade following a speech by U.S. Federal Reserve
Chairman Ben Bernanke.
 Barrick Gold Corp ABX.TO, the world's No. 1 producer, was
down 1.3 percent at C$48.48. [GOL/]
 Bernanke said that high U.S. unemployment and low inflation
point to a need for further economic stimulus but he offered no
details on the central bank's next step in easing monetary
policy. [ID:nN15187998]
 "It looks like a lot of the fears of a very aggressive Fed
turned into a little bit more of a cautious tone from Mr.
Bernanke," said Youssef Zohny, associate portfolio manager at
Van Arbor Asset Management in Vancouver.
 "Today we saw a little bit of a climax in terms of the
quantitative easing bubble," he added, noting that the stock
market rally of the last couple months has been building on
speculation of aggressive Fed action through quantitative
easing -- essentially creating new money to buy assets.
 Also dragging heavily on the index, Potash Corp fell 1.1
percent to C$146.56 after sources told Reuters that China's
Sinochem Corp will not launch a counterbid for the world's
largest fertilizer market, abandoning efforts to spoil BHP
Billiton's BHP.AX $39 billion bid. [ID:nLDE69E01U]
 At 10:26 a.m. (1426 GMT) the Toronto Stock Exchange's
S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE was down 68.35 points, or
0.54 percent, at 12,551.34. Eight of the index's 10 sectors
were weaker including the key energy and financial groups.
 Royal Bank of Canada RY.TO slipped 0.2 percent to
C$55.08, and Suncor Energy SU.TO lost 0.6 percent to
 ($1=$1.01 Canadian)
 (Reporting by Claire Sibonney; editing by Peter Galloway)

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