CANADA STOCKS-Golds drag TSX lower; Rogers rises after results

Fri Feb 15, 2013 4:43pm EST

* TSX falls 35.16 points, or 0.28 percent, to 12,686.63
    * Six of 10 main sectors advance
    * Index hits lowest point since Jan. 17
    * Goldcorp down 2 percent, Barrick Gold slips 1.9 percent
    * Rogers, Telus rise after results

    By John Tilak
    TORONTO, Feb 15 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index closed
weaker on Friday, touching its lowest point in nearly a month,
as shares of miners such as Goldcorp Inc and Barrick Gold
Corp sank after the price of the precious metal hit a
six-month low.
    The decline outweighed gains made by Rogers Communications
Inc and Telus Corp after the telecom companies
reported robust quarterly results.
    Disappointing North American economic data also weighed on
sentiment, including a report showing Canadian manufacturing
sales registered the biggest monthly decrease since the Great
Recession. 
    "All the data points coming out of Canada show the economy
is slowing down appreciably," said Elvis Picardo, strategist and
vice president of research at Global Securities in Vancouver.
    "If you can look past the short-term risks, the
opportunities continue to be in energy and materials," he said.
"But we need a big turnaround in sentiment, especially for the
gold producers."
    The index's materials sector, which includes mining stocks,
slid more than 2 percent. Goldcorp fell 2 percent to C$33.99
despite posting a lower-than-expected drop in adjusted quarterly
profit on Thursday. Rival miner Barrick Gold fell 1.9 percent to
C$31.82.
    The bullion price sank 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. 
    The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
 closed down 35.16 points, or 0.28 percent, at
12,686.63, after dropping earlier to 12,667.70, its lowest point
since Jan. 17. Six of the 10 main sectors on the index were
trading higher.
    Suncor Energy Inc, down 1.4 percent at C$31.75,
played the biggest role of any stock in leading the market
lower. 
    It and other energy producers fell after oil prices sank on
an unexpected dip in U.S. industrial production that spurred
concerns about lagging economic activity. 
    Other big decliners included Brookfield Asset Management Inc
. The stock fell more than 3 percent to C$37.26 after
the company reported its profit slid 19.2 percent in the fourth
quarter.
    
    TELECOMS SUPPORT MARKET
    The telecoms sector helped support the market, rising 1.8
percent. Rogers, the country's biggest wireless company, rose 4
percent to C$47.32 and played the biggest positive role of any
single stock.
    It gained after the 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.
 
    Competitor Telus posted a 23 percent rise in quarterly
profit, helped by strong growth in its wireless business. The
stock was up 1.5 percent at C$67.81. 
    Fairfax Financial Holdings Ltd shares rose nearly 5
percent to C$376.98. The Canadian property and casualty insurer
run by investment guru Prem Watsa posted a
stronger-than-expected fourth-quarter profit late on Thursday,
which included a large investment gain.