Canada's main stock market continued its losing streak on Wednesday, dragged down by the energy sector as crude oil prices hit multi-year lows.
Toronto Stock Exchange's benchmark Standard & Poor's/TSX Composite Index dropped 157.24 points or 1.11 percent to 14,036.63 points, its eighth slide in past 10 trading days.
Crude oil prices sank to nearly six-and-half-year lows after U.S. data showed an unexpected rise in stockpiles. The U.S. benchmark West Texas Intermediate for September delivery moved down 1.82 U.S. dollars to settle at 40.8 dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
About three-quarters of the TSX index's top 20 decliners were in energy and financial sectores. Energy giants Baytex Energy plummeted 15.7 percent, and Paramount Resources slipped 12.5 percent.
Industrials were also hard hit, as Black Diamond Group dropped 6.3 percent, while Newalta Corporation moved 4.8 percent lower.
Global base metals also took a hit, as Thompson Creek Metals dropped 4.6 percent, and Orbite Technologies faltered 4.2 percent.
Bucking the trend, gold stocks posted gains, particularly B2Gold, which climbed 11.1 percent. Agnico Eagle Mines also gained 7.6 percent.
In telecoms, Rogers Communications went up 1.4 percent.
On Wall Street, traders were digesting mixed signals from the U.S. Federal Reserve that an interest rate hike in September was still under debate.
The Dow Jones industrial average was down 162.61 points at 17,348.73, while the Nasdaq dropped 40.30 points to 5,019.05 and the S&P 500 lost 17.31 points to 2,079.61.
Back on Bay Street in Toronto, the Canadian dollar on Wednesday went down to 0.7592 U.S. dollar, compared with 0.7651 U.S. dollar Tuesday.