TSX Drifts Lower As Energy, Mining Stocks Extend Losses -- Canadian Commentary

By RTT News, 
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(RTTNews.com) - Canadian stocks are drifting lower Wednesday morning, with investors treading cautiously due to a lack of triggers.

Weakness in the U.S. and European markets and worries about the situation in Ukraine where clashes are on between pro-Russian separatists and Ukrainian forces.

Energy and materials stocks are weak once again. Gold stocks are down as well, tracking falling bullion prices.

The benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index is down 79.70 points or 0.54 percent at 14,578.32.

On Tuesday, the index ended down 57.67 points or 0.39 percent at 14,725.42, snapping a five-session winning streak.

Bank of Montreal (BMO.TO) Group reported second-quarter net income of C$1.06 billion or C$1.60 per share, up from last year's C$944 million or C$1.40 per share. The stock is moving up 0.7 percent.

National Bank of Canada (NA.TO) shares are down 1.7 percent on reporting second quarter net income of $362 million, compared to $417 million in the second quarter of 2013. Diluted earnings per share came in at $1.01 in the second quarter, against $1.20 in the second quarter of 2013.

Among other bank stocks, Canadian Imperial Bank Of Commerce (CM.TO) is up nearly 1 percent, Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS.T) and Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD.TO) are modestly higher, while Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO) is down marginally.

Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc. (VRX.TO) shares are down nearly 3 percent. Valeant has raised its offer for Allergan Inc. ( AGN ), by increasing cash consideration by $10.00 per share to $58.30 per share, representing an increase of approximately 21% from the prior offer of $48.30 per share in cash.

The drugmaker has also reached an agreement with Nestle S.A. (NSRGY.PK,NSTR.L) to sell all rights to Restylane, Perlane, Emervel, Sculptra and Dysport owned or held by Valeant for $1.4 billion cash.

In the energy sector, Bellatrix Exploration Ltd. (BXE.TO) is down more than 7 percent, Bankers Petroleum (BNK.TO) is down 1.3 percent and Crescent Point Energy Corp. (CPG.TO) is declining 1 percent.

Suncor Energy Inc. (SU.TO), Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO), Cenovus Energy (CVE.TO), Encana Corporation (ECA.TO) and Imperial Oil (IMO.TO) are also notably lower.

In the materials space, Teck Resources Limited (TCK.B.TO), Lundin Mining Corporation (LUN.TO), HudBay Minerals Inc. (HBM.TO), Sherritt International Corporation (S.TO) are down 1 to 2.5 percent.

Among gold stocks, Goldcorp Inc. (G.TO), Barrick Gold Corporation (ABX.TO), Silver Wheaton Corp. (SLW.TO), Yamana Gold Inc. (YRI.TO) and Detour Gold Corporation (DGC.TO) are declining 1 to 3 percent.

Realty stocks Brookfield Asset Management Inc. (BAM.A.TO), Brookfield Property Partners L.P. (BPY.UN.TO) and Boardwalk Real Estate Investment Trust (BEI.UN.TO) are down 0.8 to 2 percent.

In commodities, crude oil futures for July are down $0.46 or 0.44 percent at $103.65 a barrel, after declining to 103.43 a barrel, a one-week low.

Natural gas for July is up $0.075 or 1.67 percent at $4.587 per million btu.

Gold prices are weak, extending previous session's slide. Gold futures for August are down $7.20 or 0.57 percent at $1,258.50 an ounce.

Silver for July is down $0.074 or 0.39 percent at $18.993 an ounce.

Meanwhile, copper is down marginally at $3.175 per pound.

In the currency market, the Canadian loonie is trading at 1.0862 against the U.S. dollar, little changed from previous close.

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This article appears in: News Headlines

Referenced Stocks: ABX , AGN , BAM , BMO , BNS

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