(Adds portfolio manager , details on bond yields, geopolitics;
* TSX closes down 112.92 points, or 0.72 percent, at
* Nine of the TSX's 10 main groups end lower
By Fergal Smith
TORONTO, April 13 Canada's main stock index fell
on Thursday to the lowest in more than two weeks as declining
bond yields pressured the heavyweight financials group, while
resource shares also lost ground.
Canada's 10-year yield dropped below the 1.50 percent
threshold for the first time in nearly five months, tracking a
drop in U.S. Treasury yields as U.S. President Donald Trump's
favorable view of low interest rates intensified a bond market
rally that was underpinned by geopolitical tensions in Syria and
News of a massive bomb dropped by the United States in
eastern Afghanistan added to uncertainty ahead of a holiday
weekend in the United States and Canada.
"Long-term interest rates have moved down, meaning there is
a squeeze on margins (of banks) here," said Ian Nakamoto, equity
specialist at MacDougall, MacDougall & MacTier, a division of
Royal Bank of Canada fell 1.5 percent to C$94.67,
while the overall financials group lost 1 percent.
Wall Street also closed lower as investors weighed earnings
from big U.S. banks, while investors have scaled back hopes for
quick implementation of market-friendly policies by the Trump
administration, including financial sector deregulation and tax
"I think we got ahead of ourselves thinking things were
going to be done quicker," Nakamoto said.
The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
closed down 112.92 points, or 0.72 percent, at
15,535.48, its lowest close since March 27.
It lost 0.8 percent for the holiday-shortened week.
The energy group declined 1.6 percent even as oil prices
ended higher. U.S. crude oil futures settled up 7 cents at
$53.18 a barrel.
Nine of the index's 10 main groups ended lower. The
materials group, which includes precious and base metals miners
and fertilizer companies, lost 0.6 percent.
Barrick Gold Corp, the world's largest gold miner,
fell 1.6 percent to C$26.42 even as prices for the precious
metal posted a five-month high.
Analysts say Barrick must take steps to safeguard investor
confidence by ensuring there are no more operating mishaps at
its mines after a third incident in 18 months at its big
Canadian new home prices rose in February, driven by higher
costs in Toronto and other cities in Ontario in a report that
was likely to underscore concerns that some markets are becoming
Canadian manufacturing sales declined less than expected in
February after three consecutive months of increases.
(Additional reporting by Alastair Sharp; Editing by Andrea