Canadian stocks ended deep in the red Thursday, with investors disappointed at the U.S. Federal Reserve's failure to introduce further quantitative easing measures after its policy meeting yesterday. Investors also fretted over the global economic growth amid a recent batch of weak economic data from China, Europe and the U.S., with China's GDP growth for the second quarter in focus.
Some weak jobs report from Australia and the Bank of Korea's unexpected rate cut also weighed on investor sentiment, with a fall in commodity prices adding further pressure on the resource-heavy Toronto's main index.
Toronto's main index, the S&P/TSX, closed Thursday at 11,425.47, down 119.17 points or 1.03 percent. The S&P/TSX Composite Index touched an intraday high of 11,527.19 and a low of 11,366.74.
The TSX Venture Index closed at 1,169.19, down 23.60 points or 1.98 percent. The index opened at 1,183.67 compared to its previous close of 1,192.79.
Most major components of the S&P/TSX Index were in the red, led by the Metals & Mining, Energy and the Financial indices.
The Metals & Mining Index was the major loser, shedding 2.74 percent. Lundin Mining Corp. (LUN.TO) dropped 1.75 percent, First Quantum Minerals Ltd. (FM.TO) dropped 4.37 percent, and Teck Resources Limited (TCK.B.TO) slipped 1.47 percent.
Gold prices ended lower on a higher dollar with the Federal Reserve providing no hint of any further quantitative easing in the near term. Gold futures for August delivery dropped $10.4 or 0.7 percent to close at $1,565.30 an ounce Thursday on the NYMEX. The Global Gold Index shed 0.99 percent.
Among other gold stocks, Barrick Gold Corp. (ABX.TO) surrendered 1.37 percent, while Kinross Gold Corp. (K.TO) gained 0.50 percent. Eldorado Gold Corp. (ELD.TO) slipped 3.44 percent. Semafo Inc. (SMF.TO) plunged over 22 percent after an update on its mineral reserves and resources, while Goldcorp Inc. (G.TO) slipped 0.36 percent.
The Materials Index dropped 1.18 percent, with heavyweight Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan Inc. (POT.TO) shedding 1.24 percent. Cline Mining Corp.(CMK.TO) lost 4.35 percent.
U.S. crude oil futures for August delivery, gained $0.27 or 0.3 percent to close at $86.08 a barrel Thursday on the NYMEX.
The Energy Index dropped 1.55 percent with Suncor Energy Inc. (SU.TO) shedding 1.37 percent, Canadian Natural Resources Limited (CNQ.TO) down1.28 percent, and Encana Corp. (ECA.TO) down 0.50 percent. Progress Energy Resources Corp. (PRQ.TO), which is to be acquired by Petronas, shed 0.20 percent.
The Financial Index was down 1.24 percent with Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO) down 1.17 percent, Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS.TO) down 1.39 percent, and Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD.TO) shed 0.71 percent. Manulife Financial Corp. (MFC.TO) surrendered 4.05 percent, while Sun Life Financial Inc. (SLF.TO) dropped 2.46 percent.
Heavyweight transportation systems maker Bombardier Inc. (BBD.B.TO) shed 3.74 percent. The company's aerospace division was awarded an order for six Q400 NextGen planes from Chorus Aviation Inc. (CHR.A.TO) for about $189 million.
Blackberry maker Research In Motion Limited (RIM.TO) ended 0.13 lower.
Media company Corus Entertainment Inc. (CJR_B.TO) lost close to 5 percent despite posting an improved third quarter profit of C$44.95 million or C$0.51 per share, while analysts expected earnings of C$0.49 per share.
Telecommunications company Cogeco Cable Inc. (CCA.TO) swung to profit in third quarter, reporting net income of C$53.16 million or C$1.09 per share, compared to a loss last year. The stock was down 1.81 percent.
Communications equipment maker DragonWave Inc. (DWI.TO) dived 12.71 percent after reporting a wider first quarter loss of $12.6 million or $0.35 per share, compared to analysts estimate of a loss of $0.28 per share.
Meanwhile, building material dealer Jewett-Cameron Trading Co. Ltd. (JCT.TO) skyrocketed 21.62 percent after reporting an improved third-quarter profit of $937,000 or $0.59 per share from a year ago.
Biotechnology company Thallion Pharmaceuticals (TLN.TO) surged over 18 percent after reporting a second-quarter net loss of $0.7 million, but which narrowed from last year.
In economic news, Statistics Canada said its New Housing Price Index (NHPI) continued to move up, rising 0.3 percent in May, following a 0.2 percent increase in April. Year over year, the NHPI was up 2.4 percent in May, following a 2.5 percent increase the previous month. The metropolitan regions of Toronto and Oshawa, and Calgary were the top contributors to the increase, partially offset by weakness n Victoria.
In economic news from the U.S., a report from the Labor Department showed jobless claims dropped to 350,000 from the previous week's revised figure of 376,000. The drop surprised economists, with jobless claims expected to edge up to 375,000 from the 374,000 originally reported for the previous week.
Eurozone industrial sector output bounced back unexpectedly in May, with industrial production up 0.6 percent month-on-month, following a 1.1 percent decrease in April. The outcome was better than economists' expectations for a flat reading.
Elsewhere, wholesale price inflation in Germany eased to 1.1 percent in June from 1.7 percent in May, the Federal Statistical Office said. During the month, wholesale prices of metal and metal ores as well as semi-finished products fell 5.1 percent annually.
by RTT Staff Writer
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