CANADA STOCKS-TSX slips as golds offset gains in Rogers, Telus

Fri Feb 15, 2013 11:36am EST

* TSX falls 25.20 points, or 0.20 percent, to 12,696.59
    * Six of 10 main sectors advance
    * Goldcorp down 2.5 percent, Barrick Gold slips 1.7 percent
    * Rogers, Telus rise after results

    By John Tilak
    TORONTO, Feb 15 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index fell
to a 1-1/2 week low on Friday, led by gold stocks such as
Goldcorp Inc and Barrick Gold Corp, as the price
of the precious metal tumbled to a six-month low on weakening
investor demand.
    The decline outweighed gains made by telecom stocks, Rogers
Communications Inc and Telus Corp, which
reported robust quarterly results.
    Economic data showed U.S. manufacturing got off to a weak
start this year as motor vehicle assembly tumbled, and Canadian
manufacturing sales recorded the biggest decline in about 3-1/2
years in December.
    Investors also followed developments from the G20 meeting in
Moscow, looking for signs in its final communique of the
direction currencies might be heading after a period of
heightened volatility.
    The biggest impact on the market was resource prices, with
gold tumbling to a six-month low on weak investor demand,
currency uncertainty and a dearth of physical demand from China
due to the Lunar New Year holiday.   
    "Gold always sells off ahead of the G20 meetings," said John
Ing, president of Maison Placements Canada.
    "A currency war is going on. There's the fear that central
banks who are trying to protect their currencies might threaten
gold sales."
    At midmorning, the Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX
composite index was down 25.20 points, or 0.20
percent, at 12,696.59, after dropping earlier to 12,686.21, its
lowest point since Feb. 4. Six of the 10 main sectors on the
index were trading higher.
    The materials sector, which includes mining stocks, slid 2
percent. Goldcorp fell 2.5 percent to C$33.82 despite posting a
lower-than-expected drop in adjusted quarterly profit on
Thursday. Rival miner Barrick Gold fell 1.7 percent to C$31.90.
    Energy shares slipped 0.4 percent as oil prices fell, with
Suncor Energy Inc declining 0.9 percent to C$31.90.
    The telecoms sector added 1.6 percent. Rogers, the country's
biggest wireless company, posted a 30 percent rise in adjusted
quarterly profit, increased its dividend and said its chief
executive would leave the company early next year. Its shares
gained 4 percent to C$47.29.
    Telus, another telecom giant, posted a 23 percent rise in
quarterly profit, helped by strong growth in its wireless
business. The stock was up 1.3 percent to C$67.63.
 
    Financials, the index's weightiest sector, rose 0.3 percent.
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