TSX ends lower; some energy stocks limit losses

TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index slipped on Wednesday as shares in some mining and telecom companies and a convenience store operator weighed, although rising energy stocks limited losses.

A man walks past an old Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) sign in Toronto, June 23, 2014. REUTERS/Mark Blinch

The country’s central bank warned of risks to growth, hitting the currency but having only a marginal impact on financial stocks, while investors cheered one energy acquisition and pushed another buyer lower.

The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE settled down 16.37 points, or 0.11 percent, at 14,796.65. Eight of its 10 main sectors fell, although most were slight losses.

“The index is still extremely resilient,” said Elvis Picardo, strategist at Global Securities in Vancouver, adding that corporate earnings were doing just enough to offset bearish economic data as investors continue to seek yield.

Alimentation Couche Tard Inc ATDb.TO fell 2.2 percent to C$66.35, after the convenience store operator said it had won approval for its purchase of almost 300 Esso fuel and convenience stores from Imperial Oil Ltd IMO.TO.

On the other side of the ledger, pipeline company Enbridge ENB.TO rose 2.1 percent to C$56.44, adding to sharp gains on Tuesday, when it said it would pay about $28 billion in stock to buy Spectra Energy Corp SE.N.

Other gainers included Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc VRX.TO, up 3.1 percent to C$39.05 after announcing the commercial U.S. introduction of a constipation medication late on Tuesday.

The telecom sector fell 1.3 percent, with Rogers Communications Inc RCIb.TO down 1.7 percent at C$55.62, and consumer staples lost 1.4 percent, with no other sector falling more than 0.25 percent.

Global’s Picardo said the TSX’s roughly 14 percent gain so far this year has been “propelled by monster gains in the two most economically sensitive groups”, materials and energy, and that “if you take that away then the TSX doesn’t look that strong.”

“I would wager that there is more downside risk than upside potential,” he said.

New Gold Inc NGD.TO slumped 7.2 percent to C$6.73 after saying development costs for a mine in northwestern Ontario had risen.

Larger gold miners also weighed as bullion prices dipped. [GOL/] The materials group, which includes precious and base metals miners and fertilizer companies, slipped 0.2 percent.

Department store operator Hudson's Bay Co HBC.TO fell 2.2 percent to C$17.66 after saying it expects 2016 revenue to reach only the lower end of its forecast.

The Bank of Canada held interest rates steady, citing weaker-than-expected global growth but forecasting the country’s economy would bounce back this year.

Reporting by Alastair Sharp; Editing by Lisa Von Ahn and Meredith Mazzilli