Toronto's main index is slightly lower in early trading on Tuesday, but remains near the six-month closing high from the previous session. Mining and energy stocks are giving back some of the recent gains to lead the decline.
The S&P/TSX Composite Index has slipped 36.78 points or 0.37% to 9,833.59. The index finished at its highest level since November 5 on Monday.
Mining stocks are down 3.45%, surrendering some of the recently-seen sharp advance. Inmet (IMN.TO) has dropped 6%, First Quantum (FM.TO) is off 4% and Teck Cominco (TCK.B.TO) has slipped 2.2%.
Energy stocks are down 2.8% as crude oil has moved off of a five-month high. Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO) is down 3.4%, Canadian Oil Sands (COS.UN.TO) has fallen 3% and Suncor (SU.TO) has dropped 2.9%.
EnCana (ECA.TO) has lost 2.2% as the company announced that it has completed public offering US$500 million notes with a coupon rate of 6.50% due May 15, 2019. The company intends to use offering net proceeds to repay portion of its existing bank and commercial paper indebtedness.
In corporate news, Magna International (MG.A.TO) has slipped 2.5% after North America's largest auto parts maker announced that it could buy a minority stake in Opel, the European unit of ailing automaker General Motors Corp. (GM) and one of Magna's customers in Europe. The offer would rival that of Italy's Fiat SpA.
WestJet (WJA.TO) has added 7.4% after the company announced April traffic results with a load factor of 81.2%. Revenue passenger miles or RPM increased 5.5% year over year and capacity, measured in available seat miles or ASMs, grew 7.2% over the same period.
Loblaw Companies Ltd. (L.TO) is up 6.6% after the company announced that its first quarter net earnings increased to C$109 million, compared to C$63 million a year ago.
Across the border, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke told lawmakers Tuesday that the decline in the economy may be slowing and the housing market has shown signs of bottoming. However, the Fed chief warned that the labor market remains a possible source of concern.
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