P.M. market numbers for February 8, 2010

By Staff | February 8, 2010 | Last updated on February 8, 2010
4 min read
| North American markets | International markets | Bonds | Currency | Commodities |

The Toronto stock market closed lower Monday as investors continued to take profits from the strong rally of 2009 amid worries about the strength of the global economic recovery and sovereign debt issues in Europe.

The S&P/TSX composite index lost 107.82 points to 11,115.3, led by falling financial and commodity stocks.

Concerns are growing that some European countries, including Greece, Portugal and Spain, might not be able to handle their mounting levels of debt. Stock markets have been heading lower since mid-January amid plans by China to contain economic growth by curbing lending and the Obama administration’s proposed rules to restrict trading by large financial institutions.

Sovereign debt worries have been brewing since late November when Dubai announced that the government’s flagship investment company was in financial trouble and asked for a six-month standstill on payments on its massive debt.

"I was sort of surprised at that juncture that the market didn’t react more negatively than it did," said Steve Uzielli of ScotiaMcLeod.

"But what we didn’t know was, (were) there other Dubais out there? And then, lo and behold, you have Greece and Spain and Portugal. It has put pressure on the euro. It’s not going to bring down the whole complex, but it is a cause for concern."

Hopes for a strong rebound helped drive stock markets higher, with hardly a break, beginning in early March of 2009, that culminated in a 31% gain on the TSX last year. But the recent troubles demonstrate a recovery might not be happening as fast as some had anticipated.

"We never expected the recovery to be moving up in a straight line — the so-called V-shaped recovery — we’ve been anticipating more of a choppy year in 2010," said ScotiaMcLeod’s Uzielli.

"It’s become clichéed now, with a strong first half economically and a weak second half. But even in that first half, you’re going to get stops and starts."

The Canadian dollar moved down 0.39 of a cent to 93.07 cents US.

On the TSX, worries about European debt helped push the financial sector down 0.41% as Manulife Financial headed down 27 cents to $18.97 and National Bank lost 86 cents to $56.62.

The gold sector was the biggest percentage decliner, off 3.4% even as the April gold contract on the New York Mercantile Exchange gained $13.40 to US$1,065.10 an ounce. Barrick Gold Corp. faded $1.41 to C$37.04 while Goldcorp Inc. declined $1.31 to $36.88.

The industrials sector fell back 1.13% with Canadian National Railways down 62 cents to $52.91.

Bombardier Inc. lost 11 cents to $5.34 despite an announcement that a German customer had ordered 48 additional Talent 2 trains from the transportation giant for 200 million euros or about US$272 million.

Bombardier also is offering to buy back up to US$550 million of its outstanding debt securities for cash in a move to take advantage of favourable conditions on capital markets.

Oil prices headed higher after three days of declines with the March crude contract on the Nymex ahead 70 cents to US$71.89 a barrel. But the energy sector was down 0.74%, with Suncor Energy off 62 cents to C$31.28 and Imperial Oil 58 cents lower at $37.81.

The base metals sector was down 0.63% even as March copper added six cents to US$2.91 a pound. Commodity prices were depressed last week as debt concerns pushed the U.S. dollar higher. Ivanhoe Mines declined 56 cents to C$14.04 and Teck Resources gained 30 cents to $34.50 ahead of earnings scheduled to be released after the market close.

The TSX Venture Exchange moved up 5.19 points to 1,460.6.

Financials in particular weighed on New York markets following a Wall Street Journal report that said U.S. Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke will begin laying the groundwork for credit tightening later in the year.

New York’s Dow Jones industrials backed away 103.84 points to 9,908.39, the Nasdaq composite index was down 15.07 points to 2,126.05 and the S&P 500 index dipped 9.45 points to 1,056.74.

In economic news, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. reported that the annual rate of housing starts reached 186,300 in January, up from 176,100 in December. The agency added that actual housing starts for 2009 totalled 149,081 units, with activity improving as the year progressed.

In other corporate news, mining company Xstrata PLC on Monday reported a 41% drop in full-year net profit as last year’s economic downturn and the weakness of the dollar affected global commodity sales. Profit fell to US$2.77 billion.

Xstrata became a major player in Canada’s mining industry after it acquired the former Falconbridge nickel miner a few years ago.

The Canpotex marketing partnership agreed to sell 350,000 tonnes of Canadian potash to China’s Sinofert. The fertilizer ingredient was sold at "competitive prices" on the spot market and is to be shipped before the end of March.

Canpotex is owned by three companies: PotashCorp., Agrium Inc. and Mosaic Corp. Mosaic shares fell 64 cents on the New York Stock Exchange to US$54.54, while Potash shares slipped $1.71 to C$109.34 on the TSX and Agrium was down $1.08 at C$62.02.

Shares in technology firm Wi-LAN Inc. rose six cents to $2.73 after it said it has signed a letter of intent to settle a lawsuit filed by Telus Communications Inc., which claimed ownership interests in several patents. Telus shares dipped 10 cents to $32.53.

(The Canadian Press)

North American markets Back to Top
Close Change YTD
Dow Jones 9,908.39 -103.84 or -1.04% -4.98%
S&P 500 1,056.74 -9.45 or -0.89% -5.23%
NASDAQ 2,126.05 -15.07 or -0.70% -6.31%
TSX Composite 11,115.30 -107.82 or -0.96% -5.37%

International markets Back to Top
Close Change YTD
Nikkei 9,951.82 -105.27 or -1.05% -5.64%
Hang Seng 19,550.89 -114.19 or -0.58% -10.61%
SENSEX 15,935.61 +19.96 or +0.13% -8.76%
FTSE 100 5,092.33 +31.41 or +0.62% -5.92%
CAC 40 3,607.27 +43.51 or +1.22% -8.36%
DAX 5,484.85 +50.51 or +0.93% -7.93%

Bonds Back to Top
Bonds $Current $Previous %Yield
Cdn. 10-year bond 103.18 103.17 3.35
Cdn. 30-year bond 116.70 116.67 3.99
U.S. 10-year bond 98.34 98.50 3.58
U.S. 30-year bond 97.80 97.76 4.51

Currency Back to Top
BoC Close Today Previous
Canadian $ 0.9307 0.9346
US $ 1.0745 1.0699

Euro Spot Rate Today Previous
Canadian $ 0.6811 0.6848
Euro 1.4682 1.4602

Commodities Back to Top
Gold AM PM
London Gold Fix ($US) $1,070.00 $1,064.00

Oil Open Change
WTI Crude Future (US) $71.84 +$0.65 or +0.91%


Advisor.ca staff


The staff of Advisor.ca have been covering news for financial advisors since 1998.