November 20, 2009 / 4:04 PM / 9 years ago

CANADA STOCKS-TSX sags on weaker commodities, profit-taking

 * TSX down 76.96 points at 11,523.34
 * All 10 sectors lower, materials lead retreat  (Adds details, quotes)
 By Irene Kuan
 TORONTO, Nov 20 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index was lower on Friday morning as weaker commodity prices, caused partly by a stronger U.S. dollar, pressured shares of Barrick Gold (ABX.TO) and other resource issues.
 Barrick fell 1.4 percent to C$46.65, while Suncor Energy (SU.TO) dropped 0.8 percent to C$37.95. Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO) fell 0.9 percent to C$70.44.
 Oil prices fell below $77 a barrel while gold prices were also weaker. [O/R] [GOL/], with the U.S. dollar rising broadly as investors pared back riskier assets. [USD/]
 “The commodities are lower across the board coming in, and we’ve got some profit-taking,” said Bruce Latimer, a trader at Dundee Securities.
 “The markets had a very good run the last few weeks. A lot of people who have been investing have backed off.”
 The pullback on Friday came after the resource-heavy TSX rose to a 13-month high earlier this week.
 At 10:33 a.m. (1533 GMT), the S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE was down 76.96 points, or 0.66 percent, at 11,523.34 with all 10 of its main groups lower.
 The market downturn came after Bank of Canada Governor Mark Carney said on Thursday evening that Canada’s economy performed worse than expected in the third quarter, but was now recovering. He also cautioned that it risks further setbacks due to a strong Canadian dollar. [nN19514256]
 Earlier on Thursday, Finance Minister Jim Flaherty suggested he thought the economy could have stood still in the third quarter.
 Steve Ibel, institutional equities trader at Beacon Securities, in Halifax, Nova Scotia, said those comments did not have much bearing on the broader market.
 “I think they are being more overly cautious in their estimates,” Ibel said.
 Financials also weighed on the TSX, with Manulife Financial (MFC.TO) down 0.9 percent at C$18.78. and Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD.TO) off 0.7 percent at C$67.33.
 “The TSX is still taking a bit of a kicking from the financials with Manulife being down,” he said.
 Manulife, North America’s biggest insurer, led the TSX lower on Thursday after it announced a surprise C$2.5 billion stock offering late on Wednesday. [ID:nN191454]
 ($1=$1.07 Canadian)  (Reporting by Irene Kuan; editing by Rob Wilson)                                      

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