Canada Stocks Slip as Gold Miners Fall; Telecom Companies Rise
Barrick Gold Corp. (ABX), the world’s largest producer of the metal, slipped 1.8 percent. Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan Inc. increased 1.9 percent, after the Conference Board of Canada said BHP Billiton Ltd.’s hostile bid for the company would have “few” negative effects on the province. TMX Group Inc. fell 0.4 percent after announcing plans to create a trading platform that will compete with Alpha Trading Systems and other companies.
The Standard & Poor’s/TSX (SPTSX) Composite Index slipped 40.14 points, or 0.3 percent, to 12,322.94 at 4 p.m. in Toronto. Gold fell in New York after the U.S. dollar rebounded from the lowest level in more than six months against the euro. Gold producers make up 11 percent of Canadian stocks by market value.
“It’s a currency-induced selloff that’s potentially in the works today,” said Bob Decker who helps manage C$4.2 billion ($4 billion) at Aurion Capital Management in Toronto. The market is “likely to have a bit of a corrective phase in the next six weeks.”
The S&P/TSX completed a third-straight weekly advance Oct. 1, after U.S. income and spending and Chinese manufacturing increased more than economists forecast. The index surged 9.5 percent in the three months ended Sept. 30, the biggest quarterly gain in a year.
“After such a strong September it’s not unusual to see a small pullback,” Decker said. “There’s sort of a wait-and-see, show-me attitude right now.”
Barrick Gold declined 1.8 percent to C$47.09. Goldcorp Inc. (G), the world’s second-largest gold producer by market value, fell 1.3 percent to C$43.98.
Northgate Minerals Corp., a gold producer with mines in Canada and Australia, fell 5.5 percent to C$2.94. The shares have fallen 16 percent since Sept. 28, as the company said it was selling $150 million in debt that can be converted to stock to finance a portion of the development costs of its Young-Davidson gold mine near Matachewan, Ontario.
“Gold is kind of flat, but stocks in the gold sector stay pretty volatile.” said Marcus Xu, director of equity investments at Genus Capital Management in Vancouver, which manages about C$1.7 billion.
Potash Corp. rose 1.9 percent to $147.70. BHP’s $40 billion hostile bid for the company would have “few” negative effects on the province of Saskatchewan apart from C$2 billion in lost revenue, the Conference Board said in a report posted on a Saskatchewan government website.
TMX Group fell 0.4 percent to C$31.46. The owner of the Toronto stock exchange said it will create an alternative trading platform to compete with Alpha Trading Systems and other companies that have taken market share from Canada’s biggest bourse.
An index of telecommunications services companies in the S&P/TSX was the best performing group and the only one posting a gain as the phone companies followed their U.S. peers higher. The index of Canadian carriers rose 1.6 percent, erasing a 1.1 percent decline Oct. 1.
Rogers Communications Inc. (RCI/B), Canada’s largest wireless carrier, led the group, advancing 1.9 percent to C$38.80. Rogers last week agreed to pay C$103.2 million to buy back 2.9 million shares. BCE Inc. (BCE), the nation’s largest phone company, rose 1.5 percent to C$33.49. Telus Corp. (T), the nation’s third-largest wireless phone company, gained 1.9 percent to C$46.
“There’s sort of a bounce in these stocks on relatively late volume after a selloff on Friday,” said Luc Girard, who helps manage about C$18 billion ($17.5 billion) as a director of the portfolio advisory group at Desjardins Securities in Montreal.
Crude oil for November delivery declined 11 cents from an eight-week high to $81.47 a barrel as U.S. stocks slipped and orders for U.S. capital goods increased.
TransCanada Corp. (TRP), the country’s biggest pipeline operator, advanced 0.4 percent to C$38.26. Questerre Energy Corp. (QEC) rose 3.3 percent to C$1.90 for the second-biggest gain in the S&P/TSX. The shares fell 28 percent on Oct. 1 after the company announced project delays.
Brookfield Properties Corp. rose 3.8 percent to C$16.82 for the biggest gain in the S&P/TSX. The company will replace the semicircular marble stairs of the Winter Garden, the centerpiece of the World Financial Center, as part of a $50 million overhaul, three people briefed on the matter said.
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