Canadian stocks fell, briefly erasing gains for the year before recovering some losses in the final hour, as the nation’s largest banks tumbled and commodities producers slid with base-metals prices.
Bank of Nova Scotia and Royal Bank of Canada retreated at least 1.1 percent to lead declines among financial services companies. First Quantum Minerals Ltd. sank 3.3 percent as copper capped the longest run of weekly drops since 2013. Enbridge Income Fund Holdings Inc. climbed 4.1 percent after agreeing to buy Enbridge Inc.’s Canadian liquids pipeline business for C$30.4 billion ($24.8 billion). Enbridge rose 3.2 percent.
The Standard & Poor’s/TSX Composite Index fell 117.52 points, or 0.9 percent, to 14,645.11 at 4 p.m. in Toronto. The benchmark index fell as much as 1.3 percent before paring the drop. The gauge is little changed for the year, after capping a fourth straight weekly slide for the longest streak since October.
“The TSX is heavy on financials and with a possible move on interest rates plus credit issues in Europe, the index remains vulnerable,” said Youssef Zohny, a portfolio manager at Stenner Investment Partners of Richardson GMP Ltd. in Vancouver. Richardson GMP manages about C$28 billion.
Eight of 10 industries in the S&P/TSX fell Friday. Trading volumes were about double the 30-day average amid a quarterly phenomenon known as quadruple witching, when futures and options contracts on indexes and individual stocks expire.
Royal Bank stumbled 1.1 percent and Bank of Nova Scotia retreated 1.2 percent as financials dropped 0.9 percent as a group. The industry accounts for about a third of the benchmark equity gauge.
Raw-materials producers slumped 2 percent. Integrated miner First Quantum declined 3.3 percent, and Teck Resources Ltd. lost 2.3 percent. Copper posted a fifth weekly decline, the longest run of losses in two years, and aluminum fell to a 16-month low on concern demand will weaken in China, the largest user of industrial metals.
Goldcorp Inc. tumbled 2.7 percent and Detour Gold Corp. fell 6.1 percent.
Canadian Oil Sands Ltd. lost 3.9 percent and Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. retreated 2 percent. Crude for July delivery fell 1.4 percent in New York.
Retail sales posted a surprise 0.1 percent decline in April on a drop in food and electronics, less than all 18 forecasts in a Bloomberg News survey with a median estimate of a 0.7 percent increase. Canada’s inflation rate advanced 0.9 percent in May from a year earlier.
Investors are also watching developments in Europe. Euro-area leaders will hold an emergency summit in Brussels on Monday to discuss Greece after finance ministers failed to reach an agreement.