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North American stocks fell at the start of trading on Wednesday, after Japan's move to drive down the value of the yen pushed the U.S. dollar higher.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 33 points or 0.3 per cent, to 10,493. The broader S&P 500 fell 4 points or 0.3 per cent, to 1117. In Canada, the S&P/TSX composite index fell 4 points or 0.3 per cent, to 1117.

U.S. financials continued to slip, just days after a rally when investors cheered the agreement on new international financial rules. Bank of America Corp. fell 1.2 per cent and JPMorgan Chase & Co. fell 0.4 per cent. In other moves, Intel Corp. fell 0.9 per cent and General Electric Co. fell 0.5 per cent.

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Among Canadian stocks, gold producers continued their winning streak after the price of gold held relatively steady following a surge into record territory on Tuesday. Barrick Gold Corp. rose 1.1 per cent.

However, financials were weak. Manulife Financial Corp. fell 0.9 per cent and Royal Bank of Canada fell 0.6 per cent. Energy stocks also took a step backward following a retreat in the price of crude oil, to $75.35 (U.S.) a barrel. Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. fell 1.9 per cent and Suncor Energy Inc. fell 0.9 per cent.

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