Saturday, December 10

TSX falls as commodity stocks weigh

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Canada’s main stock index fell on Thursday, tracking weakness in oil and precious metal prices, amid worries over the path of US interest rates and demand in top metal consumer China.

At 10:22 am ET (1522 GMT), the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index was down 130.67 points, or 0.65%, at 19,827.29, extending losses from the previous session.

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The energy sector and materials sector, fell 1.5% each, as metal and crude prices slid over the dollar’s strengthening and investors reckoned that China’s recent easing of some COVID-19 curbs might not be enough to boost demand.

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Month-on-month consumer prices rose in October and now traders are looking to producer prices data, due on Friday, for cues on how it would alter the Bank of Canada’s (BoC) rate hiking path.

“I think they’re still on track for another hike,” said Greg Taylor, portfolio manager at Purpose Investments. “The data hasn’t done enough to derail them from their plan and I think that’s a good thing given high inflation,”

Traders are pricing in a 25-basis-point rate hike by the BoC in its Dec. 7 session.

Among stocks, TC Energy said that the weather-related issues that prompted it to halt deliveries through its Keystone oil pipeline have been resolved. Stock was down 0.9%.

Restaurant Brands International rose 1.3% after it said that its coffee chain brand Tim Hortons had forged a two-year partnership with Alibaba Group’s grocery chain.

“I think Restaurant Brands is still one of the better run companies in Canada and probably is very keen to add some exposure to China and Alibaba could help with that,” Taylor added.

Wall Street opened lower as hawkish comments from Federal Reserve official James Bullard spurred concerns that the US central bank would not tone down its aggressive stance on interest rate hikes. (Reporting by Johann M Cherian in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber)

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