TORONTO — Canada’s main stock index closed down moderately Monday along with U.S. markets as investors stuck to a cautious outlook on the economy.
Worries about growth and waning demand put pressure on commodities and stocks linked to consumer discretionary buying, said Ryan Crowther, portfolio manager at Franklin Templeton Canada.
“The investor is in general still cautious, and the data that’s out there, the economic backdrop is still challenging.”
The S&P/TSX composite index ended down 70.45 points at 20,032.66, led by declines in energy and base metal stocks.
In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 56.68 points at 35,333.47. The S&P 500 index was down 8.91 points at 4,550.43, while the Nasdaq composite was down 9.83 points at 14,241.02.
News out Monday from China pointed to slower industrial profit growth, while closer to home Canadian Pacific Kansas City Ltd. was under some pressure in part over concerns of lower Canadian consumer buying next year and other headwinds, Crowther said.
“You have this sediment spilling into a negative consumer, and that’s impacting, I think, the other rails as well,” he said.
Crude also remains under pressure, as it has the past couple of months, as production rises and OPEC has yet to hold its delayed meeting to curtail production.
“In the meantime, it’s still weaker from the vantage point of investors in the energy sector,” he said.
The TSX energy index was down 1.6%, including a decline of 2.5% for Canadian Natural Resources Ltd..
Shopify Inc. pushed against the trend with a 4.9% gain on the day after it reported Shopify merchants had Black Friday sales that were up 22% from last year to a record US$4.1 billion in sales.
“That’s cutting against the grain of what you’ve got going on in the market broadly today,” Crowther said.
The Canadian dollar traded for 73.34 cents US compared with 73.41 cents US on Friday.
The January crude contract closed down 68 cents at US$74.86 per barrel, and the January natural gas contract was down five cents at US$2.95 per mmBTU.
The December gold contract was up US$9.40 at US$2,012.40 an ounce, and the March copper contract was down three cents at US$3.80 a pound.
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