Toronto stocks have moved off the lows of the day Tuesday but remain lower in afternoon trading. Bay Street's main index has rebounded somewhat from an early battle with profit-takers.
The S&P/TSX Composite Index is down 71.48 points or 0.79% to 8,887.57. The index had closed higher in nine of the previous sessions.
Gold stocks are down 2.6% and materials have lost 1% as the precious metal has dropped more than $30 in Comex trading. Goldcorp (G.TO) has declined 2.4% and Agnico-Eagle Mines (AEM.TO) has dropped 1.2%.
Energy stocks are down 2.25% to lead the decliners. Suncor (SU.TO) is down 6.1% while the company it agreed to buy yesterday, Petro-Canada (PCA.TO) has lost 4.5%. The companies must ask the government to revoke the Petro-Canada Public Participation Act, originally put in place in 1991, that says no single shareholder can own more than 20% of the company.
UTS (UTS.TO) is down 0.6% amid reports Total's CEO does not want to raise the C$617 million offer for UTS.
Light sweet crude for May delivery has erased early losses and is up 14 cents at $53.94.
The heavily-weighted Financial Index is down 1%. Sun Life Financial (SLF.TO) is down 0.9% as the insurer had its credit rating reduced to A- from A+ by Fitch Ratings.
AMong the big six banks, Royal Bank (RY.TO) has lost 1.7%. The lender said it plans to sell 8 million shares at C$25 each, worth a total of C$200 million.
In other corporate news, MTI Global (MTI.TO) has soared 50% after the company agreed to sell certain assets of its silicones business to Rogers Corp. (ROG) for US$7.4 million.
HudBay Minerals (HBM.TO) is up 8.5% after the company announced that it has named Peter Jones chief executive officer. HudBay also appointed Wesley Voorheis as chairman.
Comaplex Minerals Corp. (CMF.TO) has lost 5.9% after the company reported fourth quarter net earnings of C$328,000 or C$0.01 per share, compared to C$2.85 million or C$0.06 per share in the same quarter of last year.
Tekmira Pharmaceuticals Corp. (TKM.TO) has dropped 4.75% after the company announced that its fiscal 2008 net loss was C$14.3 million or C$0.35 per common share, compared to a net loss of C$2.6 million or C$0.11 per common share in 2007.
Across the border, traders mulled Fed Chairman Bernanke's and Treasury Secretary Geithner's appearance before the House Financial Services Committee.
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