(RTTNews.com) - The Canadian stock market is up in early trade Wednesday, adding to yesterday's modest gain. Energy stocks are leading the way higher this morning as crude oil prices surge.
Crude prices are climbing following U.S. President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal. Trump harshly criticized the nuclear agreement with Iran in remarks from the White House and signed a memorandum re-imposing sanctions on Iran.
Markets on Wall Street are up slightly in early trade Wednesday. Markets in Europe have been fluctuating between small gains and losses since the open Wednesday. Most have now turned positive, following the modestly higher open on Wall Street.
The benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index is up 24.09 points or 0.15 percent at 15,866.80.
On Tuesday, the index closed up 34.08 points or 0.22 percent, at 15,842.71. The index scaled an intraday high of 15,842.71 and a low of 15,771.87.
The Energy Index is rising 2.10 percent. Crude oil prices are surging Wednesday morning amid U.S. inventories data and ongoing tensions with Iran.
Yesterday, President Trump said he will initiate "the highest level" of new sanctions unless Iran fully complies with the spirit of its agreement to never pursue nukes.
Meanwhile, the American Petroleum Institute reported Tuesday that U.S. crude supplies fell by nearly 1.9 million barrels for the week ended May 4.
The EIA reported this morning that U.S. crude inventories dropped by 2.2 million barrels last week.
Encana (ECA.TO) is higher by 1.89 percent and Crescent Point Energy (CPG.TO) is advancing 1.36 percent. Cenovus Energy (CVE.TO) is rising 3.24 percent Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO) is increasing 3.35 percent and Suncor Energy (SU.TO) is adding 0.64 percent. Husky Energy (HSE.TO) is climbing 1.05 percent and Imperial Oil (IMO.TO) is up 1.08 percent.
Enbridge (ENB.TO) is gaining 1.88 percent after it announced it has entered into agreements with the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) to monetize a 49 percent interest in select North American onshore renewable power assets, as well as 49 percent of Enbridge's interests in two German offshore wind projects through a newly created joint venture with CPPIB, for approximately C$1.75 billion.
The Capped Healthcare Index is higher by 0.76 percent. Concordia International (CXR.TO) is gaining 1.30 percent and Extendicare (EXE.TO) is adding 0.12 percent.
The Capped Materials Index is up 0.31 percent. Agnico Eagle Mines (AEM.TO) is rising 0.34 percent and Nutrien (NTR.TO) is gaining 1.75 percent.
The Gold Index is decreasing 0.69 percent. Gold prices are little changed Wednesday morning, as markets remained calm despite rising tensions between the U.S. and Iran.
Barrick Gold (ABX.TO) is losing 0.35 percent and Kinross Gold (K.TO) is weakening by 10.49 percent. Eldorado Gold (ELD.TO) is lower by 0.79 percent and B2Gold (BTO.TO) is down 0.81 percent. Yamana Gold (YRI.TO) is losing 0.26 percent.
The heavyweight Financial Index is decreasing 0.34 percent. Bank of Montreal (BMO.TO) is losing 0.15 percent and Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO) is declining 0.05 percent. Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD.TO) is falling 0.15 percent and Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CM.TO) is down 0.38 percent. Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS.TO) is surrendering 0.28 percent.
Toronto Star owner Torstar (TS-B.TO) is falling 5.52 percent after it reported a smaller first quarter loss of 18 cents per share for the quarter ended March 31 compared with a loss of 30 cents per share for the same period a year earlier.
On the economic front, the value of building permits issued by Canadian municipalities increased 3.1% to $8.4 billion in March, following a 2.8% decline in February, according to Stats Canada. The rise was mainly the result of higher construction intentions for multi-family dwellings, particularly in Quebec and British Columbia.
France's industrial production decreased unexpectedly in March, data from the statistical office Insee revealed Wednesday. Industrial production fell 0.4 percent month-on-month in March, in contrast to a 1.1 percent rise in February and the expected growth of 0.4 percent.
Like-for-like sales in the United Kingdom tumbled 4.2 percent on year in April, the British Retail Consortium said on Wednesday. That was well shy of expectations for a decline of 0.8 percent following the 1.4 percent increase in March.
A report released by the Labor Department on Wednesday showed a modest uptick in U.S. producer prices in the month of April. The Labor Department said its producer price index for final demand inched up by 0.1 percent in April after rising by 0.3 percent in March. Economists had expected prices to edge up by 0.2 percent.
Wholesale inventories in the U.S. increased by less than anticipated in the month of March, according to a report released by the Commerce Department on Wednesday. The Commerce Department said wholesale inventories rose by 0.3 percent in March after climbing by 0.9 percent in February. Economists had expected wholesale inventories to increase by 0.5 percent.
In commodities, crude oil futures for June delivery are up 1.92 or 2.78 percent at $70.98 a barrel.
Natural gas for June is up 0.008 or 0.29 percent at $2.74 per million btu.
Gold futures for June are up 1.90 or 0.14 percent at $1,315.60 an ounce.
Silver for July is up 0.148 or 0.90 percent at $16.62 an ounce.
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