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TSX hits 18-month low as energy shares slide

The facade of the original Toronto Stock Exchange building is seen in Toronto

By Fergal Smith

TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index fell on Monday to its lowest level in 18 months, including declines for resource shares and for shares of one of the country's major banks, as investors worried about the economic impact of aggressive central bank tightening.

The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index ended down 153.94 points, or 0.8%, at 18,327.04. That was its lowest closing level since March 2021 after dipping below the trough it set in mid-July at 18,329.06.

"The final week of the month and the quarter has picked up where last week left off, with stock markets in retreat, Treasury yields soaring and currency markets in turmoil," Colin Cieszynski, chief market strategist at SIA Wealth Management, said in a note.

U.S. Treasury yields hit fresh highs, Wall Street slid deeper into a bear market and the Canadian dollar tumbled to its lowest level in more than two years against its broadly stronger U.S. counterpart on concerns that central banks globally will keep tightening monetary policy to curb stubbornly high inflation.

On the Toronto market, Bank of Nova Scotia shares fell 2.8% after the company said it appointed Scott Thomson, a board member for six years, to succeed Chief Executive Officer Brian Porter. That's a move that came as a surprise due to the new CEO's lack of familiarity among bank investors.

The energy sector was down 3.3% as oil prices extended their recent decline, settling 2.6% lower at $76.71 a barrel.

The materials group, which includes precious and base metals miners and fertilizer companies, lost 1.3% as gold and copper prices fell.

Combined, the energy and materials groups account for 29% of the TSX's weighting.

(Reporting by Fergal Smith; Additional reporting by Shashwat Chauhan in Bengaluru; editing by Uttaresh.V and David Gregorio)