TORONTO— Canada’s main stock market in Toronto Tuesday ended the month of January marginally lower, as losses in Industrial and Financial stocks outweighed gains in Utilities and Materials.
The Toronto Stock Exchange’s benchmark Standard & Poor’s/TSX Composite inched down 19.16 points, or 0.12 percent, to end the session at 15,385.96 points. Six of the ten sub-groups finished the day in negative territory.
The TSX Industrials group saw the biggest dip on the day, falling 0.89 percent, as shares of Canada’s largest transportation companies contributed. Shares of Air Canada and WestJet Airlines Ltd, the country’s two largest Airlines, fell 1.18 percent and 1.75 percent, respectively. Meanwhile, Canadian Pacific Railway Limited retreated 1.18 percent and rival Canadian National Railway Company finished 1.17 percent lower.
Financials group also contributed to the losses on the day, as Canada’s four largest banks all lost ground on the day. No. 1 ranked Royal Bank of Canada faded 0.53 percent to 93.56 Canadian dollars (USD71.86) a share, while No. 2 ranked Toronto-Dominion Bank moved down 0.74 percent to finish at 67.41 Canadian dollars (USD51.78). Rounding out the list were Bank of Nova Scotia and Bank of Montreal, which saw respective drops of 0.63 percent and 0.66 percent on the day.
Other groups to finish the day lower were: Information Technology (0.65 percent), Consumer Discretionary (0.41 percent), Consumer Staples (0.34 percent), and Telecommunications (0.14 percent).
The TSX IT Group closed lower as Waterloo-based Blackberry Limited shares sank 0.97 percent to 9.18 Canadian dollars (USD7.05).
Groups to finish Tuesday’s session ahead included: Utilities (1.48 percent), Materials (1.30 percent), Health Care (0.76 percent), and Energy (0.06 percent).
Utilities was fuelled by Newfoundland-based utility firm Fortis Inc., which saw a 2.02 percent rise to close the day at 41.84 Canadian dollars (USD32.14). Also contributing were electricity firms TransAlta Corporation and Hydro One Limited, which saw respective gains of 1.85 percent and 1.78 percent.
The Materials group, which feature of producers of gold, precious metals, and raw materials rose as the spot prices of gold, silver and copper all climbed on the day. The price of an ounce of gold jumped USD15 to close at 1,210.30, while the same weight of silver gained 47 cents to USD17.54. Meanwhile, a pound of copper finished the day at USD2.7141, a 2.72 percent increase.
Toronto-based gold miners Detour Gold Corporation and Kinross Gold Corporation benefited from the gains in metal prices, rising 11.71 percent and 4.32 percent, respectively. Kinross was the second most traded stock with nearly 10.5 million shares exchanged on the day.
For a second straight day, Vancouver-based gold producer New Gold Inc., was the top traded stock with more than 11.3 million shares. Shares plunged 10.57 percent to 3.47 Canadian dollars (USD2.98) one day after announcing the expected gold production costs to rise between 19 and 25 percent in 2017. In the last two days the stock has lost a combined 33.27 percent.
The energy group snapped a streak of three consecutive losing days with a slight uptick, as price of Brent crude oil for April delivery moved up 0.71 percent to USD55.63 a barrel. Calgary-based Spartan Energy Corp. was one of the standouts in the group, rising 3.26 percent to close at 2.85 Canadian dollars (USD2.19) a share.
On the economic front, Statistics Canada reported that November gross domestic product rose 0.4 percent compared to the month prior. This was the fifth increase in the last six month. The year-over-year increase rose to 1.6 percent.
By industry grouping, the goods-producing industries bounced back from a 1.0 percent decrease in October with a 0.9 percent gain, while the service-producing industries ticked up from 0.1 percent to 0.2 percent. Industries that saw the largest gains were: Finance and Insurance (1.5 percent), Mining (1.4 percent), Manufacturing (1.4 percent), and Construction (1.1 percent).
The Canadian dollar jumped 0.58 cents to finish the day at USD0.7681.