Canadian stocks have turned into negative territory again on Friday as profit-takers took advantage of the multi-week high reached yesterday. Toronto's main index has followed the lead of the markets in the U.S. and Europe.
The S&P/TSX Composite Index is down 148.10 or 1.64% to move at 8,847.20. The index touched above 9,000 Thursday for the first time since Feb. 10.
Energy stocks are down 2.6% to lead the way as crude oil has given back recent gains on the NYMEX. Light sweet crude fell to $51.94, down $2.40 for the session.
Baytex Energy (BTE.UN.TO) has dropped 4.3%, Encana (ECA.TO) has slumped 3.25%, Savanna (SVY.TO) is down 2.7%, Canadian Oil Sands (COS.UN.TO) has dropped 2.3% and Suncor (SU.TO) is down 2.1%.
Gold stocks are down 2.7% and mining stocks are down 2% as the precious metal has dropped sharply on the Comex. New Gold (NGD.TO) has dropped 3.2%, Barrick Gold (ABX.TO) is down 2.1%, Eldorado Gold (ELD.TO) is down 1.9% and Yamama (YRI.TO) has slipped 1.8%.
Also in the materials sector, Agrium (AGU.TO) is down 1.6% after the company revealed an increase in bid acquire CF Industries Holdings (CF). CF stockholders will now receive $35.00 in cash, an increase of $3.30, or 10.4%, in the cash consideration, as well as one common share of Agrium for each CF share.
Mining stocks have lost 2.5% as Inmet (IMN.TO) is down 4.3% and First Quantum (FM.TO) is down 2.2%. Taseko Mines (TKO.TO) has dropped 14.7% after the company announced it will sell approximately 13.8 million common shares in an effort to raise C$20 million.
The Financial Index has dropped 1.4% with all of the big six banks in the red. Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD.TO) is down 1.5% after the company said it will increase its public offering of preferred stock to 11 million shares. The gross proceeds of the offering will now be $275 million.
In other corporate news, Lululemon Athletica (LLL.TO) has rallied 13% after the company reported fourth quarter net income of $0.16 per share, a penny better than Wall Street's expectations.
Ondine Biopharma Corp. (OBP.TO) has dropped 6.25% after the company reported fourth-quarter loss of C$2.12 million or C$0.03 per share, compared to loss of C$2.73 million or C$0.05 per share last year.
Premium Brands Income Fund (PBI_U.TO) is down 0.6% after the company revealed fourth-quarter earnings declined to C$2.96 million or C$0.17 per unit from C$3.17 million or C$0.18 per unit in the previous year.
Across the border, the Commerce Department reported personal spending rose 0.2 percent in February following an upwardly revised 1.0 percent increase in January. The modest increase in spending came in line with the expectations of economists.
At the same time, data showed personal income edged down 0.2 in February after a downwardly revised 0.2 percent increase in the previous month. Economists had been expecting a slightly more modest 0.1 percent decrease.
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