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Canadian Market Remains Firmly In Negative Territory Despite Coming Off Early Lows

After opening with a big negative gap and plunging deeper into the red within the next few minutes, the Canadian stock market staged a recovery of sorts Tuesday morning.

Still, with several stocks from healthcare, information technology and materials sections continuing to languish deep down in negative territory, the market was notably lower in early afternoon trades. Several stocks from utilities and consumer discretionary sectors are also mostly down with sharp losses.

While concerns about inflation and higher bond yields weighed on stocks early on in the session, hopes that central banks might not tighten monetary policy anytime soon prompted traders to pick up stocks at lower levels.

The benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index, which opened with a negative gap of about 125 points at 18,291.71 and swiftly plummeted to 18,021.88, was down 146.98 or 0.8% at 18,269.76 about half an hour past noon.

The Capped Healthcare Index is down nearly 6%. Chartwell Retirement Residences (CSH.UN.TO) is down more than 11%. Aphria Inc. (APHA.TO) is plunging 9%, Trillium Therapeutics (TRIL.TO), Cronos Group Inc. (CRON.TO), Canopy Growth Corporation (WEED.TO), Aurora Cannabis (ACB.TO) and Aurinia Pharmaceuticals (AUP.TO) are down 6 to 8%, and Bausch Health Companies (BHC.TO) is declining nearly 2%.

Information technology stocks Lightspeed Pos (LSPD.TO), Shopify Inc. (SHOP.TO), Sierra Wireless (SW.TO), BlackBerry (BB.TO), Docebo Inc. (DCBO.TO), Enghouse Systems (ENGH.TO) and Absolute Software (ABST.TO) are lower by 3 to 7%.

In the materials section, B2Gold Corp (BTO.TO), Teck Resources (TECK.B.TO), Canfor Corp (CFP.TO), Yamana Gold (YRI.TO), First Majestic Silver Corp (FR.TO), Ssr Mining (SSRM.TO), Novagold (NG.TO) and Kinross Gold (K.TO) are down 3 to 4.3%.

Financial stocks Manulife Financial (MFC.TO) and Sun Life Financial (SLF.TO) are down 1.1% and 1.5%, respectively.

Among the gainers in the market, Thomson Reuters (TRI.TO) is up nearly 10%. Thomson Reuters reported a fourth-quarter profit of US$562 million, that beat expectations. The company has also raised its quarterly dividend to 40.5 cents per share, up from 38 cents.

Bank of Montreal (BMO.TO) is gaining about 2.5%. The BMO Financial Group reported net income of $2,017 million for the first quarter, an increase of 27% over a year ago. Adjusted net income for the first quarter was $2,038 million, which was up 26% compared to the year-ago quarter.

Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS.TO) is rising 3.2%. Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO) and Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD.TO) are up 1.7% and 1.6%, respectively.

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