Canadian stocks fell the most in almost five months as a sell-off in energy and materials stocks dragged down the benchmark index amid escalating violence in Iraq.
Penn West Petroleum Ltd. and Husky Energy Inc. retreated at least 3.7 percent to pace losses among energy stocks, which fell 1.9 percent as a group. Descartes Systems Group Inc. fell 1.9 percent after saying it would sell additional shares. Smart Technologies Inc. jumped 4.7 percent after signing an agreement to provide New York state schools with its software.
The Standard & Poor’s/TSX Index (SPTSX) fell 143.26 points, or 1 percent, to 14,962.37 at 4 p.m. in Toronto, the biggest drop since Feb. 3.
The Wall Street Journal reported that Syrian warplanes struck targets in a western Iraqi province. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry met officials of Iraq’s semi-autonomous Kurdish region in his bid to prod leaders to unite against an al-Qaeda offshoot that has seized control over swaths of the country.
Penn West decreased 4.5 percent to C$10.31 and Husky fell 3.7 percent to C$34.55 as energy stocks declined the most since May 8. Materials stocks lost 1.8 percent.
Descartes Systems tumbled 1.9 percent to C$15.27 as it said it would sell 9.5 million shares to fund potential acquisitions and pay down debt. The software company did not provide pricing for the sale.
Smart Technologies gained 4.7 percent to C$3.02 after the education technology company said it reached a pact to provide software to more than 450 New York school districts.
Methanex Corp. advanced 2.7 percent to C$67.61 after BMO Capital Markets raised its rating on the methanol producer to outperform, the equivalent of buy, from market perform.
To contact the reporter on this story: Gerrit De Vynck in Toronto at firstname.lastname@example.org