Canada Stocks Retreat as Global Events Weigh on Largest Sectors

  • Raw-materials producers rise on gold rush from Clinton probe
  • Valeant Pharmaceuticals falls to lowest level since July

Friday's Canadian Stock Movers

Canadian stocks declined after the nation’s largest industries slumped amid global concerns, ranging from OPEC production cuts to the U.S. presidential election.

The S&P/TSX Composite Index fell 0.3 percent to 14,785.29 at 4 p.m. in Toronto, erasing an advance in afternoon trading after the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation said it’s reopening an inquiry into Hillary Clinton’s use of private e-mail. The gauge lost 1 percent for the week, with health-care and real estate shares taking the biggest hits. The S&P/TSX is up almost 14 percent in 2016, the top performance among developed equity markets tracked by Bloomberg.

Financial stocks fell 0.4 percent as four of the largest banks declined, while Manulife Financial Corp. slumped 1.3 percent, the most in a month. Energy producers lost 1.2 percent as crude tumbled in New York to the lowest in almost four weeks. The losses came as an OPEC committee discussed production targets and as U.S. equities dropped after the FBI disclosed the renewed probe into the Clinton e-mails.

Suncor Energy Inc., Canada’s biggest energy producer, slumped 0.8 percent, falling from a one-year high. The oil-sands giant swung to a profit in the third quarter after restoring operations that were shut during the Alberta wildfires in May.

Health-care companies fell 4.6 percent to a four-month low. The sector was dragged down by Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc., after the company fell 8 percent to its lowest level since July amid a selloff in U.S. drugmakers. Health-care was the worst-performing sector this week, and is down 73 percent this year, the most ever.

Raw-materials producers rallied after as a weaker dollar boosted demand for metals as a haven. Barrick Gold Corp., the world’s biggest bullion miner, added 1.5 percent after beating earnings expectations. Goldcorp Inc. gained 0.7 percent.

Six of the 11 sectors in the benchmark rose today, led by 0.5 percent gains in utilities and raw materials. Utilities reached a five-week high, with Fortis Inc. and Brookfield Renewable Partners LP gaining at least 1 percent.

Canadian stocks are now 17 percent more expensive than their peers in the S&P 500 Index. The S&P/TSX trades at 23 times earnings, compared with 20 for the S&P 500 Index.

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