Canadian stocks fell from a two-year high after a private report showed U.S. employers cut more workers and a survey said Research In Motion Ltd. lost ground in U.S. smartphone market share.
Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan Inc. fell 1.4 percent after comments by the province’s energy and resources minister raised concern BHP Billiton’s bid to buy the fertilizer maker would be blocked by the government. BlackBerry maker RIM dropped 4.4 percent.
The Standard & Poor’s/TSX Composite Index slipped 36.34 points, or 0.3 percent, to 12,461.66 at 3:08 p.m. in Toronto.
“Unemployment is not really melting away the way you would have expected it might at this point,” said Doug Davis, chief executive officer of Davis-Rea Ltd. in Toronto, which manages about C$400 million ($396 million).
The equity benchmark soared 13 percent in the three months ending yesterday thanks to a 25 percent surge in its raw- materials stocks. Gold prices jumped 11 percent during the period as investors contemplated a new round of central-bank stimulus policies to recharge the economy.
U.S. employment declined by 39,000 last month, ADP Employer Services said today, compared with a gain of 10,000 in revised figures from August. Three of 37 economists in a Bloomberg survey had forecast a decrease in jobs for September.
The S&P/TSX Financials Index fell after climbing the most in five weeks yesterday.
Insurer Sun Life Financial Inc., which derived 47 percent of its revenue from the U.S. last year, declined 1.3 percent to C$26.77. Manulife Financial Corp., North America’s third-largest insurer, lost 3.1 percent to C$12.55. Toronto-Dominion Bank, which has about 1,300 U.S. branches, dropped 0.5 percent to C$74.92.
RIM decreased 4.4 percent to $48.36 after market-research firm comScore Inc. said its share of the U.S. smartphone market slumped to 38 percent from 42 percent in May. Only Google Inc.’s Android operating system gained share among the top five smartphone platforms.
Potash Corp., the world’s largest fertilizer producer, retreated 1.4 percent to C$143.31. Bill Boyd, Saskatchewan’s energy and resources minister, said in a Bloomberg Television interview that BHP Billiton’s $40 billion bid for Potash Corp. doesn’t appear to be of “net benefit” to his province.
Canada’s federal government can block foreign takeovers if it finds they are not of “net benefit” to the country.
Gold futures rose 0.6 percent from a record close on speculation that government and central bank stimulus policies will weaken currencies.
Barrick Gold Corp. gained 1.5 percent to C$48.92. Goldcorp Inc., the world’s second-largest producer of the metal by market value, advanced 1.7 percent to C$45.61. Colossus Minerals Inc., which explores for precious metals in Brazil, rose 2.5 percent to C$8.56 after announcing drilling results it called a “success.”
Air Canada, the country’s biggest airline, jumped 8.4 percent to C$3.11, after hitting C$3.25, the highest intraday price since November 2008, after saying September traffic increased 12 percent from a year earlier.
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