The Canadian stock market ended modestly lower on Wednesday, after trading in negative territory right through the session, weighed down by lower commodity prices and largely sluggish U.S. and European markets.
Information technology, energy and healthcare stocks were among the prominent losers. Industrial and materials stocks too were mostly weak. Financial stocks found modest support, while consumer discretionary and real estate stocks turned in a mixed performance.
Pot stocks saw some hectic activity after the Canadian government legalized the sale of recreational marijuana. Canada has become the second country after Uruguay, where sale of recreational pot is now legal.
The benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index ended down 49.84 points, or 0.32%, at 15,529.90, after scaling a low of 15,452.67 and a high of 15,556.61 intraday.
On Tuesday, the benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index ended up 170.27 points, or 1.11%, at 15,579.74, the day’s high.
On the economic front, a report from Statistics Canada said that manufacturing sales in Canada fell 0.4% to $58.6 billion in August, following three consecutive monthly increases.
The Capped Energy Index shed about 1.51%. ARC Resources (ARX.TO) declined by 3.75% and Husky Energy Inc. (HSE.TO) lost 2.8%, while Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO), Vermilion Energy Inc. (VET.TO) and Tourmaline Oil Corp. (TOU.TO) lost 1.7% to 1.85%.
The Healthcare Index declined 2.5%. Canopy Growth Corporation (WEED.TO) declined by 4.2%. The company announced the launch of a new brand for the recreational market in Canada, LBS. The Company has established a curated and world-recognized family of brands, both in-house and through partnerships with icons in the cannabis space.
Bausch Health Companies Inc. (BHC.TO) tumbled by 3.7%, Aurora Cannabis Inc. (ACB.TO) ended nearly 3% down and Knight Therapeutics Inc. (GUD.TO) drifted lower by 1.45%, while Aphria Inc. (APH.TO) surged up 3.8%.
The Capped Information Technology Index shed 1.7%. Shopify Inc. (SHOP.TO) tanked more than 5%, Constellation Software Inc. (CSU.TO) ended lower by 2.1%, Enghouse Systems (ENGH.TO) lost 1.1% and CGI Group Inc. (GIB.A.TO) lost about 1.2%.
Among bank stocks, Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO), Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS.TO), Bank of Montreal (BMO.TO) and National Bank of Canada (NA.TO) gained 0.25 to 1%.
Celestica Inc. (CLS.TO) ended 2.6% up, Kinaxis Inc. (KXS.TO) gained 1%, Descartes Systems Group Inc. (DSG.TO) added 1.1%.
Wajax Corporation (WJX.TO) shares gained 1.75%, after the company announced that it has acquired all of the issued and outstanding shares of Montreal, Quebec-based Groupe Delom Inc, for an aggregate purchase price of $51.8 million.
In commodities, crude oil futures for November delivery ended down $2.17, or 3%, at $69.75 a barrel, the lowest settlement in a month, after data from EIA showed a jump in U.S. crude stockpiles.
Gold futures for December ended down $3.60, or 0.3%, at $1,227.40 an ounce.
Silver futures for December settled at $14.663 an ounce, losing $0.038 in the session and Copper futures for December ended down $0.015, at $2.7780 per pound.
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