- Valeant sinks most in seven weeks as CEO takes medical leave
- Canadian markets re-open after the Boxing Day holiday
Canadian stocks fell, snapping a five-day rally as the market re-opened following the Christmas holiday, as Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc. slumped after the embattled drugmaker’s chief executive took a medical leave of absence.
Valeant, briefly the largest company in Canada by market capitalization this year, sank 11 percent for the biggest decline in seven weeks. Chief Executive Officer Michael Pearson, who was hospitalized with a severe case of pneumonia last week, will be replaced by a team of executives while he recovers from his illness, the company said Monday.
The Standard & Poor’s/TSX Composite Index lost 0.5 percent, or 64.05 points, to 13,245.75 at 4 p.m. in Toronto, halting a five-day rally that added 2.3 percent to the gauge. The Canadian market was closed Monday for the Boxing Day holiday. Trading volume Tuesday was 45 percent lower than the 30-day average.
Energy producers slipped 0.9 percent as crude in New York recovered after a 3.4 percent slide Monday. The industry remains the worst-performing among 10 in the S&P/TSX this year, down 25 percent as slowing economic growth in China and Europe and a supply glut in crude battered commodities prices around the world.
Equity valuations in the S&P/TSX have declined 9.7 percent to about 20.5 times earnings from a 2015 high of 22.7 on April 15, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The S&P/TSX is among the worst-performing developed equity markets this year, ahead of only Singapore and Greece. The benchmark is down 1.7 percent for December and 9.5 percent for the year, headed for the worst annual retreat since 2011.
BlackBerry Ltd. added 2.4 percent, to a more than nine-month high, after ProPakistani reported Monday the smartphone maker may reach a deal to stay in Pakistan, according to unnamed sources. BlackBerry said Nov. 30 it will shutter its operations in the country to avoid allowing authorities there to monitor its main business enterprise server and e-mail messages.
Uni-Select Inc., the second-best performing stock in the S&P/TSX this year with a 130 percent advance, rose to a record after the automotive replacement parts maker’s FinishMaster paint unit agreed to buy ColorMaster Automotive Paint assets Monday for an undisclosed amount.
Laval, Quebec-based Valeant has plunged 60 percent from its August peak amid intense scrutiny from investors and lawmakers over its pricing practices, use of mail-order pharmacies and acquisitions for growth.