Canadian stocks shed early gains to end lower Monday on continued eurozone concerns, notwithstanding the bailout plan for Spain to help its banking sector. Toronto stocks were dragged down mainly by resource issues with investors cautious ahead of the elections in Greece, doubtful if the troubled nation would continue in the eurozone.
In early trading, stocks moved up after Europe offered Spain a rescue loan for its banking sector. The eurozone finance ministers' agreed to lend Spain up to $125 billion to strengthen its banking sector.
Toronto's main index, the S&P/TSX, closed Monday at 11,401.78, down 98.85 points or 0.86 percent. The S&P/TSX Composite Index touched an intraday high of 11,593.66 and a low of 11,382.37.
The TSX Venture Index closed at 1,276.71, down 16.22 points or 1.25 percent. The index opened at 1,296.57 compared to its previous close of 1,292.93.
Almost all major components of the S&P/TSX Index were in the red with the exception of the Consumer Staples and Telecommunications indices. The major decliners were the Metals & Mining, Energy, and Materials indices.
U.S. crude oil futures for July delivery dropped dropped $1.50 or 1.8 percent to close at $82.61 a barrel Monday on the NYMEX.
The Energy Index shed 1.83 percent with Canadian Natural Resources Limited (CNQ.TO) dropping 1.39 percent, while Suncor Energy Inc. (SU.TO) surrendered 2.41 percent. Encana Corp (ECA.TO) fell 0.58 percent.
The Metals & Mining Index declined 2.52 percent with Teck Resources (TCK_B.TO) dropping 2.65 percent and First Quantum Minerals (FM.TO) down 1.65 percent. Lundin Mining Corp. (LUN.TO) fell 3.57 percent, while Osisko Mining Corp. (OSK.TO) edged up 0.37 percent.
Ivanhoe Mines (IVN.TO) shed 4.10 percent after announcing that Singapore state investor Temasek Holdings has taken a 5.5 percent stake in the company for about $426 million.
The Global Gold Index dropped 1.15 percent, with gold futures for August delivery moving up $5.40 or 0.3 percent to close at $1,596.80 an ounce Monday on the NYMEX.
Among gold stocks, Goldcorp. (G.TO) moved down 0.77 percent, while Barrick Gold Corp. (ABX.TO) shed 1.32 percent. Royal Gold (RGL.TO) edged down 0.20 percent.
Gold miner Kinross Gold (K.TO) eased 0.35 percent after announcing that it had resumed production at its Tasiast mine in Mauritania, which remained closed following a labor dispute.
The Materials Index declined 1.28 percent with Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan Inc. (POT.TO) down 1.24 percent and First Uranium Corp. up 21.05 percent..
The Financial Index dropped 0.43 percent, led by Royal Bank of Canada down 0.64 percent and Manulife Financial Corp. (MFC.TO) down 1.29 percent. Sun Life Financial Inc. (SLF.TO) edged down 1.16 percent, while Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS.TO) declined 0.62 percent.
Transportation systems maker Bombardier Inc. (BBD.A.TO), dropped 2.41 percent, while smartphone maker Research In Motion Limited (RIM) shed 4.21 percent.
Fortress Paper Ltd. (FTP.TO) soared 20.20 percent after revealing a revamp of production of dissolving pulp at its Fortress Specialty Cellulose Mill.
In economic news, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development data indicated an improvement in April. The composite leading indicator, designed to anticipate turning points in economic activity relative to trend, rose to 100.5 in April from 100.4 in March. However, when compared to April last year, the index dropped 0.47 percent.
Activity in the eurozone continued to be below its long-term trend, and the corresponding indicator remaining unchanged at 99.6 for the third consecutive month.
The sub-indicator for the United States remained stable at 101.2 during the month, indicating improving economic activity. The index for the United Kingdom signaled activity remained slightly below the long-term trend, as was the case with Canada and Germany.
by RTT Staff Writer
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