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Canadian market suffers worst loss in six weeks

Xinhua, April 28, 2017 Adjust font size:

Canada's main stock market continued its recent slump on Thursday, as declines in Financial, Energy and Materials sectors led its largest single-day decline since March 14.

The Toronto Stock Exchange's benchmark Standard & Poor's/TSX Composite dipped 143.07 points, or 0.91 percent to close the trading day at 15,506.47 points. Seven of the 10 sub-groups lost ground during the session.

For the second straight day, the TSX Financial group suffered the worst loss, retreating 1.65 percent despite Toronto-based Home Capital Group Inc shares recovering from Wednesday's plunge.

The mortgage lending firm saw shares rocket 33.89 percent to 8.02 Canadian dollars (5.89 U.S. dollars) after the firm confirmed it had secured a 2 billion dollar line of credit and hired two of the country's largest banks for strategic guidance.

Shares plummeted 64.95 percent Wednesday after the company announced their high interest savings account balance had declined more than 40 percent due to an Ontario Securities Commission allegation of fraud against the company and three of its key employees.

The dip in Home Capital Group also sank shares of the country's largest banks. No. 4 ranked Bank of Montreal, No. 3 Bank of Nova Scotia and No. 2 Toronto-Dominion Bank saw respective losses of 3.12 percent, and 2.71 percent, and 2.43 percent.

Meanwhile, top-ranked Royal Bank of Canada fell 1.90 percent to 93.66 Canadian dollars (68.75 U.S. dollars) and was the top traded stock with volume exceeding 12.2 million shares.

The Energy and Material groups also contributed to the overall result, slipping 1.49 percent and 1.32 percent, apiece.

The TSX Energy group closed lower for the ninth time in the last twelve sessions despite crude oil prices finishing slightly higher.

A barrel of Brent crude for June delivery in London rose 0.21 percent to 51.65 U.S. dollars. Calgary-based Canadian Natural Resources and Cenovus Energy were the biggest deterrents, dipping 3.64 percent and 3.28 percent each.

Suncor Energy Inc, the largest crude oil producer in Canada ticked up 0.29 percent to close at 41.75 Canadian dollars (30.64 U.S. dollars).

The Materials group, which is made up of producers of gold, precious metals, and raw materials, closed lower as the price of gold continued its recent slide.

An ounce of bullion slipped 0.43 percent to 1,263.50 U.S. dollars. Meanwhile, the same weight of silver dipped 1.43 percent to 17.23 U.S. dollars.

Subsequently, shares of gold miners Goldcorp Inc, Yamana Gold Inc, and Kinross Gold Corporation retreated 4.77 percent, 3.23 percent, and 2.94 percent, respectively.

Shares of Barrick Gold Corporation, the world's largest gold miner, closed at 22.72 Canadian dollars (16.68 U.S. dollars), 1.43 percent lower.

The remaining groups to finish in negative territory were: Information Technology (0.50 percent), Telecommunications (0.42 percent), Health Care (0.42 percent), and Utilities (0.16 percent).

The news was not bad for all groups on Thursday, as three groups managed to come out ahead. Consumer Discretionary rose 0.65 percent, Industrials climbed 0.53 percent, and Consumer Staples strengthened 0.48 percent.

The TSX Consumer Staples group, which is comprised of firms in the food industry, received a boost after Toronto-based Maple Leaf Foods Inc posted better than expected first quarter financials.

Revenues of the packaged meat producer rose 1.8 percent to 811 million Canadian dollars (about 595 million U.S. dollars), while earnings per share jumped 17.9 percent. As a result of the news, shares increased 2.88 percent to 32.82 Canadian dollars (24.09 U.S. dollars).

The Canadian dollar faded 0.06 cent to 0.7340 U.S. dollar. Endit