* TSX down 86.14 points, or 0.55 percent, to 15,543.33
* Seven of the TSX's 10 main groups were down
By Solarina Ho
TORONTO, May 16 Canada's main stock index fell
on Tuesday as bank and energy shares, pinched by housing market
jitters and lower oil prices, weighed on the market.
The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index
fell 86.14 points, or 0.55 percent, to close at
15,543.33. Seven of the index's 10 key sectors lost ground.
Financial stocks, which account for roughly a third of the
index's weight, slipped 0.7 percent, as Toronto Dominion Bank
fell 0.9 percent to C$63.13, leading the group's
John Ing, president of Maison Placements Canada, said market
gyrations will continue given the concerns about the banks'
exposure to Canada's overheated housing market.
"Home Capital is still in intensive care. Until that and
other evidence of the housing market settles down - then I think
people will stop focusing on the bank," he said.
Home Capital Group Inc has struggled with financing
problems following accusations by the Ontario Securities
Commission that it made misleading statements to investors.
Oil and gas companies retreated in tandem with the price of
crude, which fell ahead of weekly U.S. inventory data. U.S.
crude prices were down 1.3 percent to $48.23 a barrel.
The overall energy group dropped 1.3 percent, with Enbridge
Inc down 1.3 percent to C$53.84.
Loyalty program provider Aimia Inc slumped 11.7 percent to
C$3.18. Its shares have been battered after Air Canada
announced last week that it would start its own loyalty program
Air Canada stock touched its highest level since November
2007 and closed up 5 percent at C$16.95 after the Canadian
government unveiled new rules that could help carriers form
joint ventures and attract foreign investment.
The materials group, home to natural resource companies, was
among the few other bright spots in the market, rising 0.7
percent, helped in part by higher gold prices. Franco Nevada
Corp rose 1.9 percent C$99.50, while Wheaton Precious
Metal Corp, formerly known as Silver Wheaton Corp, rose
2.6 percent C$29.26.
BlackBerry Ltd shares closed up 5.3 percent at
C$13.84, after touching their highest level since March 2015
during intraday trading. One analyst said the company was
working with automakers on an anti-hacking tool, while another
said it was benefiting from interest in cyber security-related
stocks following the WannaCry ransomware attack.
Declining issues outnumbered advancing ones on the TSX by
147 to 99, for a 1.48-to-1 ratio on the downside.
The index was posting 18 new 52-week highs.
(Reporting by Solarina Ho; Editing by Bill Trott)