Canadian stocks were extending losses for a third session Wednesday morning as traders await the outcome two-day FOMC meeting, due out later today. However, hopes for any aggressive stimulus measures faded amid a recent batch of upbeat economic data. A report from the ADP, earlier today, revealed employment in the U.S. private sector increased by much more than anticipated in the month of July.
The S&P/TSX Composite Index shed 50.87 points or 0.44 percent to 11,613.84, after losing 100 points or about 1 percent in the past two sessions.
Gold stocks were under sellers' radar amid falling bullion prices. The price of gold edged down as the U.S. dollar was trading mixed ahead of the outcome of the 2-day FOMC meeting. Gold for December delivery lost $7.60 to $1,607.00 an ounce.
Goldcorp. (G.TO), Seabridge Gold (SEA.TO) and Allied Nevada Gold (ANV.TO) were down around 3 percent each.
Media company Torstar Corp. (TS_B.TO) dived 6 percent after reporting a drop in second-quarter net income to C$35.7 million or C$0.44 per share, from C$112.7 million or C$1.41 per share last year. The company said its 2011 second quarter results included the C$74.6 million or C$0.94 per share gain on the sale of CTV Inc. The company declared a quarterly dividend of 13.125 cents per share.
Airlines operator WestJet Airline Ltd. (WJA.TO) shed close to 3 percent even after reporting improved second-quarter net earnings at C$42.5 million or C$0.31 per share compared to C$25.6 million or C$0.18 per share in the 2011 second quarter. Analysts were expecting the company to report earnings of C$0.33 per share.
Today's data from the EIA revealed that U.S. crude oil dived 6.50 million barrels and gasoline stocks shed 2.20 million barrels in the weekended July 27. Crude for September added $0.62 to $88.68 a barrel.
In the oil patch, Niko Resources (NKO.TO) surged close to 5 percent.
Global, upstream oil and gas company Talisman Energy Inc. (TLM.TO) gathered nearly 2 percent despite posting a significantly lower second quarter net income of $196 million or $0.14 per share versus $698 million or $0.50 per share last year. Earnings from operations were $71 million or $0.07 per share, lower than $168 million or $0.16 per share in the prior-year quarter. Analysts were expecting the company to report earnings of $0.10 per share
Food and beverages company Maple Leaf Foods Inc. (MFI.TO) gained 4 percent after posting improved second-quarter net income of C$29.85 million or C$0.21 per share versus C$23.1 million or C$0.16 per share last year. Adjusted earnings per share dropped to C$0.28 from C$0.30 in the prior year. Analysts were expecting the company to report earnings of C$0.23 per share.
Specialty bakery products company Canada Bread Co Ltd. (CBY.TO) net earnings for the second quarter of 2012 soared to C$26.8 million or C$1.05 per share, from C$14.9 million or C$0.59 per share in the prior-year quarter. Quarterly adjusted earnings per share were C$1.09, higher than last year's C$0.97. The stock edged up 050 percent.
In economic news from south of the border, the ADP said that the private sector added 163,000 jobs in July following a downwardly revised increase of 172,000 jobs in June. Economists had expected an increase of about 120,000 jobs compared to the increase of 176,000 jobs originally reported for the previous month.
Elsewhere, the euro zone manufacturing sector continued to contract data from Markit Economics showed. The manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index fell more than initially estimated to 44 in July, a 37-month low, from 45.1 in June. The flash estimate for July was 44.1.
Germany's manufacturing sector contracted more than initially estimated in July, and the rate of fall accelerated from the previous month, data from a survey by Markit Economics and BME showed. The seasonally adjusted purchasing managers' index for the manufacturing sector dropped to 43 in July from 45 in June, and hit the lowest level since June 2009.
Data out of China earlier today revealed China's official factory purchasing managers' index fell to an eight-month low of 50.1 in July, indicating sluggish growth in the sector, while a survey results from HSBC indicated the more market-sensitive private sector is starting to recover. The HSBC PMI rose to a seasonally adjusted 49.3, its highest level since February and little changed from a flash estimate of 49.5.
by RTT Staff Writer
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