April 15, 2011 / 9:02 PM / in 7 years

CANADA STOCKS-TSX slumps with banks and miners

* TSX falls 22.68 points to 13,799.12

* 5 of 10 main sectors sag, financials and materials weigh (Updates with details, commentary)

By John McCrank

TORONTO, April 15 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index ended lower on Friday as concerns over U.S. bank earnings hit financial stocks and rising global inflation rates hit miners.

Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD.TO) was down 0.85 percent at C$82.09, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CM.TO) fell 1.4 percent to C$82.50 and National Bank of Canada (NA.TO) slid 0.91 percent to C$76.30.

The heavily weighted financial sector slumped 0.62 percent after Bank of America reported a sharp drop in first-quarter profit on Friday due to higher expenses at its mortgage business. [ID:nN15213078]

That followed JPMorgan Chase & Co’s results on Wednesday, which showed shrinking outstanding loans for the fourth consecutive quarter, raising questions about future profits in the U.S. banking industry. [ID:nN13262333]

“The reaction has been definitely less than stellar, so I think we’re just kind of getting dragged down with some of the American results,” said Levente Mady, market strategist at Union Securities in Vancouver.

The materials sector, home to miners, fell 0.55 percent as mounting inflation pressures in China caused doubts to be cast on the demand outlook for commodities. Higher inflation in Europe also added to the concerns.

Inmet Mining IMN.TO was down 2.33 percent at C$66.62 and Labrador Iron Ore LIF_u.TO dropped 2.44 percent to C$76.51.

“People are worrying a little about commodity prices,” said Irwin Michael, a portfolio manager at ABC Funds in Toronto, pointing to a still-surging Chinese economy. [ID:nLDE73E0MY]

“People are looking beyond this and saying, ‘Look, they (China) are probably going to continue increasing rates, what effect is that going to have on the stock market?'”

The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE ended down 22.68 points, or 0.16 percent, at 13,799.12. Half of the 10 main sectors were lower. For the week, the index dropped 2.88 percent.

“On balance, we think this is a normal short-term correction,” said Michael. “We believe the stock market and the economy will saw-tooth their way up and the last week has been one of those saw-teeth on the way down.”

Iamgold (IMG.TO) was one of the big decliners on the day, dropping 8.67 percent to C$19.27 after it said it will sell its 18.9 percent interest in the Tarkwa and Damang gold mines in Ghana to Gold Fields (GFIJ.J) for $667 million in cash. [ID:nL3E7FF1UX] [ID:nN15210868]

Elsewhere, the Air Canada Pilots Association said it canceled a vote on a tentative labor agreement with the country’s largest airline, after parts of the proposed deal proved “controversial” among pilots. Shares of Air Canada ACa.TO fell 2.89 percent to C$2.35.

Energy producers were among the top gainers, as oil prices rose on improving U.S. consumer sentiment. [ID:nL3E7FF0HH]

Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO) ended up 2.5 percent at C$43.63, while Canadian Oil Sands COS.TO rose 3.24 percent to C$32.55.

$1=$0.96 Canadian Reporting by John McCrank; editing by Rob Wilson

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