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Canadian Market Down Marginally; Healthcare, Technology Stocks Losing Ground

The Canadian stock market is down in negative territory Friday afternoon, dragged down by losses in healthcare, information technology and consumer discretionary sections.

It was a somewhat sluggish start for the Canadian market this morning despite positive cues from Europe, easing worries about Evergrande's debt woes, and data showing a surge in Canadian retail sales.

The market recovered swiftly, but faltered again by mid morning, and is languishing in negative territory since then.

The benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index is down 17.22 points or 0.09% at 21,195.17 nearly a couple of hours past noon, after hitting a new high at 21,265.76 earlier in the day.

The Capped Healthcare Index is down more than 2.5%. Canopy Growth Corp (WEED.TO), Cronos Group (CRON.TO), Tilray Inc (TLRY.TO), Organigram Holdings (OGI.TO) and Aurora Cannabis (ACB.TO) are down 3.7 to 4%.

The Capped Information Technology index is declining 2.1%. Shopify Inc (SHOP.TO), Hut 8 Mining (HUT.TO) and Lightspeed Pos (LSPD.TO) are down 5.2%, 4.6% and 3.7%, respectively. BlackBerry (BB.TO), Tecsys Inc (TCS.TO), Nuvei Corp (NVEI.TO) and Quarterhill (QTRH.TO) are lower by 2.2 to 2.8%.

Consumer discretionary stocks Magna International (MG.TO) and Sleep Country Canada Holdings (ZZZ.TO) are down 4% and 2.95%, respectively. Brp Inc (DOO.TO) is declining 1.4%.

Corus Entertainment Inc (CJR.B.TO) shares are down nearly 4% after the company reported adjusted net income of C$21.67 million for the quarter ended August 31, 2021, down 35% from net income of C$33.18 million it posted in the corresponding quarter last year.

Auto Canada (AC.TO) is gaining about 5.7%, Canadian National Railway (CNR.TO) is up 2.5%, Canadian Pacific Railway (CP.TO) is climbing 2.1% and TFI International (TFII.TO) is up 1.8%. Goeasy (GSY.TO) is gaining 1.1%.

In economic news, data from Statistics Canada showing retail sales rose 2.1% in August over the previous month. Retail Sales Ex Autos in Canada increased 2.8% in August, rebounding from -1% in the previous month.

Canadian retail sales climbed 8.4% in August over the same month in the previous year, after rising by 5.3% y-o-y in July.

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