Canadian Stocks Are Paring Their Early Losses - Canadian Commentary
(RTTNews) - The Canadian stock market got off to a weak start Friday, but has since pared its early losses. However, the bulk of the Canadian sectors remain in the red this morning, including the energy, gold and financial sectors. Telecom and IT stocks are among the best performers in early trade.
The majority of the European markets are trading in the red Friday, adding to the losses of the previous session. Weak UK retail sales and uncertainties over the U.S. fiscal and monetary policies have had a negative impact on investor sentiment.
Markets in the United States are struggling to find direction in early trade Friday, following yesterday's lackluster performance. The recent rally, which brought the markets to record highs, appears to be running out of steam. The upcoming long weekend for President's Day may also be keeping some traders away from their desks.
The benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index is down 43.03 points or 0.27 percent at 15,821.14.
On Thursday, the index closed up 19.22 points or 0.12 percent, at 15,864.17. The index scaled an intraday high of 15,865.51 and a low of 15,820.70.
The Gold Index is declining 0.57 percent. Gold prices are steady Friday morning, as President Donald Trump's contentious press conference raised concerns about his administration's focus on new policies.
IAMGOLD (IMG.TO) is lower by 0.16 percent and Barrick Gold (ABX.TO) is decreasing 0.22 percent. Yamana Gold (YRI.TO) is down 5.79 percent and Goldcorp (G.TO) is losing 0.69 percent. Eldorado Gold (ELD.TO) is weakening by 1.51 percent and B2Gold (BTO.TO) is surrendering 2.26 percent.
The Capped Materials Index is also down 0.77 percent. Franco-Nevada (FNV.TO) is falling 0.78 percent and Agnico Eagle Mines (AEM.TO) is lower by 0.19 percent. Agrium (AGU.TO) is dropping 1.28 percent and Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan (POT.TO) is declining 1.19 percent.
The heavyweight Financial Index is decreasing 0.24 percent. Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD.TO) is falling 0.22 percent and National Bank of Canada (NA.TO) is losing 0.22 percent. Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO) is dipping 0.03 percent and Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS.TO) is weakening by 0.41 percent. Canadian Bank of Commerce (CM.TO) is slipping 0.09 percent and Bank of Montreal (BMO.TO) is lower by 0.35 percent.
The Energy Index is falling 0.20 percent. Crude oil prices are nearly flat Friday morning, holding around $53 per barrel.
Imperial Oil (IMO.TO) is falling 0.09 percent and Suncor Energy (SU.TO) is dipping 0.16 percent. EnCana (ECA.TO) is dropping 1.66 percent and Cenovus Energy (CVE.TO) is losing 0.44 percent. Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO) is decreasing 0.73 percent.
Pipeline giant Enbridge Inc. (ENB.TO) reported a 3.4 percent fall in fourth-quarter profit on restructuring charges. The stock is now down 1.08 percent.
The Capped Industrials Index is down 0.29 percent. Canadian Pacific Railway (CP.TO) is decreasing 0.67 percent and Canadian National Railway (CNR.TO) is losing 0.06 percent. Finning International (FTT.TO) is dropping 3.04 percent.
Air Canada (AC.TO) reported a bigger quarterly loss as its load factor fell. The airline says margins will be tight this quarter due to rising fuel costs. Shares are sinking 6.25 percent.
Bombardier (BBD.B.TO) had its price target raised from $2.50 to $2.75 at CIBC, after reporting its quarterly loss narrowed. The stock is climbing 2.20 percent.
The Capped Healthcare Index is lower by 0.17 percent. Valeant Pharmaceuticals International (VRX.TO) is weakening by 1.51 percent and Concordia International (CXR.TO) is surrendering 4.06 percent.
The Capped Telecommunication Services Index is up 0.24 percent. Rogers Communication (RCI-B.TO) is higher by 0.37 percent and TELUS (T.TO) is gaining 0.85 percent.
The Capped Information Technology Index is gaining 0.21 percent. Constellation Software (CSU.TO) is rising 1.36 percent and Sierra Wireless (SW.TO) is increasing 2.13 percent.
Saputo Inc. (SAP.TO) issued a nationwide recall of certain gouda cheese products due to listeria worries. Shares are slipping 0.02 percent.
Sherritt (S.TO) is considering a full exit from its Madagascar mine project to reduce debt, Globe and Mail reports. The stock is sinking 9.16 percent.
On the economic front, the euro area current account surplus declined in December, the European Central Bank said Friday. The current account surplus fell to a seasonally adjusted EUR 31 billion in December from EUR 36.4 billion in November.
Eurozone construction output declined for the first time in three months in December, figures from Eurostat showed Friday. Construction output dropped 0.2 percent month-on-month in December, in contrast to November's 0.9 percent increase. Output had increased in the previous two months.
UK retail sales declined unexpectedly at the start of the year as consumers curbed their spending in response to rising inflation. Retail sales including automotive fuel dropped 0.3 percent month-on-month in January, following a 2.1 percent fall in December, data from the Office for National Statistics showed Friday.
Sales were expected to grow 1 percent in January after falling for two consecutive months.
Pointing to a positive economic outlook in the first half of the year, the Conference Board released a report on Friday showing a bigger than expected increase by its index of leading U.S. economic indicators in the month of January.
The Conference Board said its leading economic index climbed by 0.6 percent in January after rising by 0.5 percent in December. Economists had expected the index to increase by 0.4 percent.
In commodities, crude oil futures for March delivery are down 0.11 or 0.21 percent at $53.25 a barrel.
Natural gas for March is up 0.027 or 0.95 percent at $2.881 per million btu.
Gold futures for April are up $1.00 or 0.08 percent at $1,242.60 an ounce.
Silver for March is down $0.049 or 0.27 percent at $18.025 an ounce.