(Adds investment strategist quotes and updates prices)
* TSX closes down 15.08 points, or 0.1 percent, at 14,595.50
* Four of the index's 10 main groups end lower
By Fergal Smith
TORONTO, Oct 6 Canada's main stock index edged
lower on Thursday as gold miners' shares fell with the precious
metal on increased expectations that U.S. interest rates will
rise this year.
The materials group, which includes precious and base metal
miners and fertilizer companies, lost 1.5 percent, while a
global gold index heavily populated by Canadian miners
dropped 2.5 percent.
Both measures had risen steadily this year until August and
have faltered since.
Barrick Gold Corp fell 2.3 percent to C$20.59 and
Detour Gold Corp lost 3.4 percent to C$22.87.
"Gold has had a very, very strong run and gold stocks more
so, contributing a lot to the performance of the TSX
year-to-date. So when you get a move like this ... it is going
to have some impact," said Philip Petursson, chief investment
strategist at Manulife Investments.
Spot gold fell for the eighth straight session, down
nearly 1 percent, pressured by a stronger dollar after U.S.
weekly jobless claims fell and ahead of key data that could put
the Federal Reserve on track to raise interest rates this year.
Fairfax Financial Holdings Ltd, which has bet on
declining stock markets and more deflationary pressures, fell
3.5 percent to C$727.46.
The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
closed down 15.08 points, or 0.1 percent, to
Just four of the index's 10 main groups ended lower.
Energy stocks firmed 0.4 percent as oil extended recent
Cenovus Energy Inc rose nearly 3 percent to C$19.98
and Suncor Energy Inc advanced 0.6 percent to C$36.90.
"We continue to see some upside to oil prices and that will
lift the TSX overall," Petursson said.
U.S. crude oil futures settled up 61 cents at $50.44
a barrel spurred by an informal meeting of major oil producers
on output cuts and plunging U.S. crude inventories.
"What our research would show is that as oil prices move up
it tends to lift TSX earnings across the board," said Petursson.
In addition to energy companies, other groups that benefit
from higher oil prices include banks, industrials and consumer
companies, Petursson added.
Canada's main stock index is expected to extend this year's
hefty gains in 2017, a Reuters poll found, although stock market
strategists said they are concerned about the outcome of the
U.S. election and potential threats to global trade.
Industrials rose 0.3 percent, while the heavyweight
financials group was little changed.
(Additional reporting by Alastair Sharp; Editing by Lisa Von
Ahn and Diane Craft)