(RTTNews.com) - The Canadian stock market opened lower Wednesday, but has since pared its early losses and has inched into positive territory. Most Canadian sectors are trading in the green, with the notable exception of the energy sector. Energy stocks are falling along with crude prices this morning, after U.S. crude inventories dropped.
The majority of the European markets are trading modestly to the downside Wednesday. Traders are in a cautious mood due to ongoing trade war concerns.
Markets on Wall Street are slipping in early trade Wednesday, after ending yesterday's session in the green.
The benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index is up 0.00 points or 0.01 percent at 16,286.31.
On Tuesday, the index closed down by 133.94 points or 0.82 percent, at 16,286.30. The index scaled an intraday high of 16,494.09 and a low of 16,280.95.
The Energy Index is falling 0.95 percent. Crude oil prices are falling Wednesday morning on U.S. inventory data.
According to a report released by the American Petroleum Institute on Tuesday, U.S. crude inventories dropped by 6.02 million barrels last week, much more than a 3 million barrels fall predicted by a survey by Bloomberg.
The EIA reported this morning that U.S. crude inventories dropped by 1.4 million barrels last week.
Encana (ECA.TO) is losing 1.68 percent and Imperial Oil (IMO.TO) is falling 0.66 percent. Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO) is declining 1.81 percent and Crescent Point Energy (CPG.TO) is weakening 1.28 percent. Cenovus Energy (CVE.TO) is down 2.52 percent and Enbridge (ENB.TO) is surrendering 1 percent.
The Capped Healthcare Index is higher by 2.38 percent. ProMetic Life Sciences (PLI.TO) is rising 2.94 percent.
Concordia International Corp. (CXR.TO) is falling 6 percent after it reported second quarter revenue of $139.5 million, compared to $160.8 million for the second quarter of 2017, and $152.3 million for the first quarter of 2018. Net loss for the second quarter was $180.0 million, the company said.
The Capped Information Technology Index is gaining 0.42 percent. BlackBerry (BB.TO) is climbing 2.10 percent and Descartes Systems Group (DSG.TO) is rising 1 percent.
The heavyweight Financial Index is increasing 0.34 percent. Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO) is rising 0.31 percent and Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD.TO) is gaining 0.37 percent. Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS.TO) is advancing 0.14 percent and Bank of Montreal (BMO.TO) is higher by 0.40 percent. National Bank of Canada (NA.TO) is adding 0.24 percent.
The Gold Index is increasing 0.37 percent. Goldcorp (G.TO) is climbing 0.19 percent and Barrick Gold (ABX.TO) is rising 0.71 percent. Yamana Gold (YRI.TO) is up 0.25 percent and B2Gold (BTO.TO) is increasing 4.75 percent. Eldorado Gold (ELD.TO) is advancing 1.87 percent.
Thomson Reuters (TRI.TO) is climbing 2.26 percent after it announced that its planned sale of a 55% interest in its Financial & Risk business to private equity funds managed by Blackstone is expected to close early in the fourth quarter of 2018.
Aurora Cannabis Inc. (ACB.TO) and Alcanna Inc. (CLIQ.TO) today announced the companies have reached a license agreement whereby Alcanna has been given exclusive rights to open retail cannabis stores under the brand name "Aurora" across Canada. Aurora is gaining 2.76 percent and Alcanna is climbing 2.83 percent.
On the economic front, a report from Statistics Canada this morning showed that building permits declined 2.3 percent in June. Economists had expected an increase of 1.0 percent.
China's exports growth exceeded expectations in July, despite the U.S. imposing tariffs on $34 billion Chinese goods.
Data from the General Administration of Customs showed on Wednesday that exports advanced 12.2 percent year-on-year in July. This was faster than the 10 percent rise economists had forecast.
At the same time, imports logged a strong double-digit growth of 27.3 percent from a year ago versus the expected growth of 16.5 percent.
Due to higher imports, the trade surplus fell to $28 billion in July, which was below the expected $38.9 billion level.
France's economic growth is set to improve in the third quarter, survey data from Bank of France showed Wednesday. Gross domestic product is forecast to expand 0.4 percent in the third quarter, compared to 0.2 percent growth seen in the second quarter.
In commodities, crude oil futures for September delivery are down 1.40 or 2.02 percent at $67.77 a barrel.
Natural gas for September is up 0.043 or 1.48 percent at $2.94 per million btu.
Gold futures for December are down 1.30 or 0.11 percent at $1,217.00 an ounce.
Silver for September is down 0.013 or 0.08 percent at $15.36 an ounce.
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