February 23, 2010 / 9:37 PM / 8 years ago

CANADA STOCKS-TSX drops as U.S. data spawns anxiety

* U.S. home-price, consumer confidence data disappoint (Updates to close)

By Ka Yan Ng

TORONTO, Feb 23 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index fell for a second straight session on Tuesday, knocked down by weak U.S. consumer confidence data that cast doubt on the strength of the economic recovery.

U.S. consumer confidence fell to a 10-month low in February, which added to skittishness about the economy that was spurred by numbers earlier in the day that showed U.S. home prices dipped unexpectedly in December. [ID:nN23102211]

Top heavyweight decliners came from the index’s three biggest sectors, financials, oil and gas, and materials. The three collectively account for about three-quarters of the index’s weighting. These sectors were also behind the recent eight-day run of gains.

“We went down right off the get-go. We were due for a down day,” said John Kinsey, portfolio manager at Caldwell Securities Ltd.

Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO) fell 0.97 percent to C$56.05, while Suncor Energy (SU.TO) shed 2.2 percent to C$30.85. Cenovus Energy (CVE.TO) tumbled 3.4 percent to C$25.79, while Goldcorp (G.TO) lost 3.15 percent to C$38.45.

The U.S. data helped to weaken key commodity prices, which pressured the materials and oil and gas groups, and led both sectors down sharply as oil broke a five-day rally to drop below $79 a barrel, while gold also lost ground. [O/R] [GOL/]

The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE ended 108.04 points, or 0.93 percent, lower at 11,526.71. Six of the index’s 10 main groups were lower.

    $1=$1.06 Canadian Reporting by Ka Yan Ng; editing by Peter Galloway

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