A Toronto Stock Exchange ticker is seen at The Exchange Tower in Toronto on Thursday, August 18 2011. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Aaron Vincent Elkaim

A Toronto Stock Exchange ticker is seen at The Exchange Tower in Toronto on Thursday, August 18 2011. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Aaron Vincent Elkaim

North American stock markets start the trading week down, loonie falls

S&P/TSX composite index was down 225.93 points at 11,625.88, shortly after the start of trading

Canada’s main stock index plunged more than 200 points to start the trading week as the financial sector, which includes the country’s big banks, fell.

The S&P/TSX composite index was down 225.93 points at 11,625.88, shortly after the start of trading.

In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 578.81 points at 18,595.17. The S&P 500 index was down 66.42 points at 2,238.50, while the Nasdaq composite was down 116.54 points at 6,762.98.

The Canadian dollar traded for 69.21 cents US compared with an average of 69.77 cents US on Friday.

The May crude contract was up seven cents at US$22.70 per barrel and the May natural gas contract was down 1.4 cents at US$1.661 per mmBTU.

The April gold contract was up US$36.00 at US$1,520.60 an ounce and the May copper contract was down 8.10 cents at US$2.0905 a pound.

READ MORE: It could take 3 years for stock market to recover, says B.C. economist

The Canadian Press


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