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TSX Slides As BoC Cautions On Trade -- Canadian Commentary

Canadian stocks fell Wednesday as the Bank of Canada warned about the negative impact of trade wars with the U.S.

"Trade policy developments are an important and growing source of uncertainty for the global and Canadian outlooks," the bank said in a statement Wednesday that accompanied its latest rate decision.

The BoC left its main interest rate at 1.25%, as expected.

The loonie dropped to its lowest in eight months versus the U.S. dollar.

Markets on both sides of the border were in a lousy mood after free trade advocate Gary Cohn left the Trump Administration.

The TSX Composite was down 72 points to 15,472.61. Energy stocks struggled as crude oil prices sank.

In economic news, Canada's merchandise trade deficit totalled $1.9 billion in January, narrowing from a $3.1 billion deficit in December. Imports decreased 4.3% and exports fell 2.1%.

A report released by payroll processor ADP on Wednesday showed private sector employment in the U.S. increased by more than expected in the month of February.

ADP said employment in the private sector jumped by 235,000 jobs in February after surging up by a revised 244,000 jobs in January.

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