Equities in Toronto edged lower on Tuesday, as mining stocks weighed with lower commodity prices and banks pulled back at the end of their earnings season while consumer, technology and telecom shares ticked up.
The S&P/TSX Composite Index remained negative 20.27 points to greet noon Tuesday at 15,948.76
The Canadian dollar inched down 0.07 cents to 78.81 cents U.S.
Aphria Inc surged 19.5% to $13.88 after saying it had reached a deal to supply medical cannabis to Loblaw Cos Ltd's pharmacy chain Shoppers Drug Mart.
Bombardier Inc rose 1% to $3.17 after two sources said Aeromexico has held preliminary talks to take some of its CSeries jets orders from Delta Air Lines Inc, which owns a stake in the Mexican carrier, to avoid possible U.S. trade duties levied on the planes.
The materials group, which includes precious and base metals miners and fertilizer companies, lost ground as miners of copper, nickel, zinc and other base metals were hit hard by falling commodity prices.
First Quantum Mineral fell 3.9% to $14.64 and Lundin Mining lost 2.6% to $6.875 as copper prices declined 3.5% to $6,588 a tonne, the lowest level in nearly two months.
The heavyweight energy group was little changed, while Kinder Morgan Canada Ltd fell 1.1% to $16.87 after saying late on Monday that the start-up of its Trans Mountain pipeline expansion could be delayed past September 2020.
The financials group slipped as bank earnings season wrapped up, with Bank of Montreal slipping 0.7% to $98.88 despite reporting adjusted profit that beat analysts' estimates and Bank of Nova Scotia down 0.9% to $80.91 after its bid for a majority stake in BBVA Chile was formally accepted.
On the data beat, Statistics Canada reported that Canada’s international merchandise trade deficit with the world totaled $1.5 billion in October, narrowing from a $3.4-billion deficit in September. Exports were up 2.7% while imports decreased 1.6%
The TSX Venture Exchange dropping 6.51 points to 780.93
The 12 TSX subgroups were split down the middle, as health-care hiked 1%, information technology moved up 0.5%, and consumer discretionaries vaulted 0.2%.
The half-dozen laggards were weighed most by materials, sinking 1.2%, while gold tailed off 1%, and utilities dimmed 0.3%.
U.S. equities traded higher on Tuesday as technology stocks rebounded from a selloff that started last week.
The Dow Jones industrials surrendered 51.91 points from Monday’s all-time high to 24,238.14, with Microsoft rising nearly 2% to lead advancers.
The S&P 500 added 0.73 points to 2,640.17, with information technology rising 1.2%.
The NASDAQ added 28.21 points to 6,803.58, with Facebook, Amazon, Netflix and Google-parent Alphabet all rising at least 2%.
Tech — the best-performing sector this year — has taken a hit recently, sliding about 3% over the past week, as investors digest a major tax bill passed by Senate members.
Financials, meanwhile, are up more than 3% over the past week. In theory, the proposed changes would help banks and financials more than tech companies, since they currently pay a higher effective tax rate.
In corporate news, Snap shares shot 9.3% higher after Barclays said the social media could hit a "turning point" in 2018.
AutoZone shares also ticked higher after the company reported better-than-expected quarterly results.
Prices for the benchmark 10-year Treasury note recovered, lowering yields back to Monday’s 2.37%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.
Oil prices nosed up six cents a barrel to $57.53 U.S.
Gold prices backtracked $11.40 to $1,266.30 U.S. an ounce.