* TSX down 258.93 pts, or 2.13 pct, at 11,915.43
* Index hits lowest point since Oct. 21
* Falling gold, copper prices hit miners (Adds details, analyst’s comments)
By Jon Cook
TORONTO, Nov 17 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index tumbled more than 2 percent on Thursday, nearing a one-month low, as rising yields on European bond sales sparked a widespread selloff in commodities that sent material and energy issues lower.
Falling gold, copper and silver prices played havoc with TSX mining stocks, which plunged more than 4 percent. Gold miners accounted for most of the losses, as bullion’s worst one-day dip in nearly two months caused the subindex to fall 3.5 percent. [GOL/]
Barrick Gold (ABX.TO), down 3.8 percent at C$50.66 and Goldcorp (G.TO), down 2.1 percent at C$52.38, led the slide.
Copper fell 3 percent to its worst one-day decline in three weeks, while silver slid nearly 7 percent. [MET/L]
The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE ended down 258.93 points, or 2.13 percent, at 11,915.43, its lowest point since Oct. 21.
The TSX’s retreat mirrored the broader downturn on global markets after a rise in Spain’s borrowing costs to almost 7 percent at an auction kept European debt contagion fears alive. [MKTS/GLOB]
“The sentiment on the economic outlook for the euro zone appears to be becoming ever more grim,” said Pat Mohr, a commodity market specialist at Scotia Capital .
Energy issues finished down 2.4 percent as U.S. crude fell by more than $3 a barrel, a day after it topped $100, as worries about the euro zone crisis deepened. [O/R]
Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO) led that sector’s decline, falling 3.9 percent to C$37.19.
Solid U.S. economic data helped cushion the losses. New U.S. claims for jobless benefits hit a seven-month low last week, while permits for home construction rebounded strongly in October, bolstering views the economy was gaining traction. [ID:nN1E7AG0BT]
“If we didn’t have that outstanding problem in Europe we’d actually see the (index rising),” said Robert Kavcic, economist at BMO Capital Markets.
($1=$1.03 Canadian) (Editing by Rob Wilson)