Canadian Stocks Little Changed as Commodities Rebound, Tech Lags

  • Index fails to retake 13,000, closes near two-year low
  • Rebound in commodity prices lift materials and energy stocks

Canadian stocks ended little changed near the lowest level in two years, as a rally in commodity prices boosted resource producers, while technology shares tumbled.

The Standard & Poor’s/TSX Composite Index added 15.12 points, or 0.1 percent, to 12,937.59 at 4 p.m. in Toronto. The gauge erased an early rally of 1.6 percent. It had plunged 3.3 percent in the prior days, tumbling below 13,000 for the first time since 2013.

Even though oil extended a decline as investors discounted a decline in U.S. crude inventories, energy producers advanced for a second day. Material and industrial shares also advanced Wednesday, with each group adding at least 0.6 percent, as resources pared losses from earlier in the week. A Bloomberg commodity index added 0.1 percent for the first gain in three days. That gauge slumped the most since July on Monday.

Energy and raw-materials producers, which account for 30 percent of the broader index, have fallen at least 20 percent this year to lead declines in the S&P/TSX. A combination of slowing economic growth in China and a rally in the U.S. dollar in anticipation of an interest-rate increase by the Federal Reserve have crimped commodities prices.

Six of 10 groups in the S&P/TSX advanced Wednesday. Health-care and financial shares were little changed, adding 0.2 percent and 0.1 percent, respectively. Technology and consumer discretionary stocks lagged, losing at least 1.7 percent.

Laurentian Bank of Canada slid 3.6 percent, the most in a year, after posting a fiscal fourth-quarter loss that included C$78.4 million ($58 million) in costs tied to restructuring and impairments, and selling shares to bolster its balance sheet.

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