* TSX down 17.48 points, or 0.12 percent, at 14,227.66
* Six of the 10 main index sectors advance
* Higher oil prices lift energy shares
By John Tilak
TORONTO, March 14 Canada's main stock index
edged lower on Friday as worries about the crisis in Ukraine and
fears of a slowdown in economic growth in China weighed on
Moscow sent more troops into Crimea on Friday and repeated
its threat to invade other parts of Ukraine, ignoring efforts by
the West to prevent the holding of a referendum in Crimea on
Sunday on separating from Ukraine and joining Russia.
Jitters about the volatile situation in Ukraine and fears of
a slowdown in the Chinese economy have gripped investors in
recent days, with the index dropping more than 70 points on
The benchmark index recorded its first weekly decline in six
weeks. It is up about 4.5 percent so far in 2014, but market
analysts are concerned about positive catalysts that could help
drive the market even higher.
"We're into a quiet phase wondering where we're going to go.
Sooner or later we'll get an idea," said Fred Ketchen, director
of equity trading at ScotiaMcLeod.
"You never know how this will end up," he said of the
Ukraine situation. "I think it will eventually blow over, but it
does have a negative impact on the market."
The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
closed down 17.48 points, or 0.12 percent, at
Six of the 10 main sectors on the index were higher.
Gains in the price of oil helped lift some energy shares. In
the group, Canadian Natural Resources Ltd added 0.8
percent to C$39.76, but Suncor Energy Inc fell 0.3
percent to C$36.24.
In the gold sector, Goldcorp Inc advanced 0.6 percent
to C$31.84, and Barrick Gold Corp was up 0.9 percent at
Financials, the index's most heavily weighted sector,
declined 0.6 percent, with Royal Bank of Canada giving
back 0.9 percent to C$71.17.
Shares of Empire Co Ltd, which operates Sobeys,
Canada's No. 2 grocery chain, ended down 3.3 percent at C$65.84
after the company reported quarterly results earlier this week
that came in far below expectations.