Stocks Sink in General Malaise

Golds Jump, Tech, Discretionary Slump

A promising day on Canadian stock markets went a-glimmer Friday, as equities sank in triple digits once more, mostly on weakness in consumer discretionary and tech issues.

The S&P/TSX Composite Index dropped 141.87 points, or nearly 1%, to finish Friday and the week at 14,795.13

The Canadian dollar surged 0.45 cents to 75.11 U.S.

Consumer discretionary took the biggest knocks, as Magna International slid $2.09, or 3.3%, to $60.63, while Canadian Tire shed $4.10, or 2.8%, to $144.85.

Tech stocks also got bruised, with BlackBerry black and blue 37 cents, or 3.6%, to $10.67, while Shopify hurtled earthward $14.43, or 6.9%, to 195.22.

WestJet Airlines Ltd fell 87 cents, or 4.2%, to $19.77. Elsewhere in industrials, Stella-Jones dropped 23 cents to $38.26.

Detour Gold climbed 58 cents, or 6%, to end the week at $10.29, while Barrick Gold took on 35 cents, or nearly 2%, to $18.22.

In the energy sector, Tamarack Valley Energy rose five cents, or 2.3%, to $2.12, and Crescent Point Energy gained 12 cents, or 2.9%, to $4.27.

Among other notable movers, shares of Cronos Group surged 24% on Marlboro cigarette maker Altria Group's move to invest $1.8 billion in the cannabis producer.

Cronos shares flew, gaining $3.12, or 22.3%, to $17.10.

Canopy Growth galloped $1.49, or 3.7%, to $41.84.

On the economic calendar, Statistics Canada reported this country produced 94,000 jobs in November, driven by gains in full-time work. The unemployment rate decreased 0.2 percentage points to 5.6%, the lowest since comparable data became available in 1976.

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange gained 6.3 points, or 1.1% to 572.38.

Eight of the 12 TSX subgroups had lurched into the red Friday, as consumer discretionary stocks lost 3.3%, information technology declined 2.6%, and industrials dipped 2.1%.

The four gainers were led by gold, shining 2.7% brighter, energy, improving 1.5%, and health-care, gaining 1.4%,

ON WALLSTREET

Stocks dropped sharply on Friday, concluding what has been a wild week for Wall Street.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average plummeted 558.72 points, or 2.3%, to close Friday at 24,388.95

The S&P 500 faded 62.87 points, or 2.3%, to 2,633.08

The NASDAQ plunged 219.01 points, or 3.1%, to 6,969.25

For the week, the major indexes all dropped more than 4%. Thursday’s session included a violent drop of nearly 800 points, followed by a strong rebound from those levels.

Shares of large-cap tech companies led the way lower. Facebook, Amazon, Netflix and Google-parent Alphabet all traded lower. Apple’s stock also fell 3.6%— erasing its gains for the year — after Morgan Stanley cut its price target on the tech giant’s shares, citing weakening iPhone sales.

The U.S. economy added 155,000 jobs last month. Economists polled by Dow Jones expected a gain of 198,000 jobs. Wage growth also missed estimates.

Indexes fell to their lows of the day after the Wall Street Journal reported federal prosecutors are expected to bring charges against Chinese hackers. The hackers are linked to the Chinese government and were allegedly trying to break into technology service providers in the U.S.

Also, the Wall Street Journal reported the Federal Reserve is considering whether to signal a wait-and-see approach to rate hikes at its upcoming meeting this month. The report said Fed officials do not know what their next move on rates will be after December.

Prices for the benchmark for the 10-year U.S. Treasury were higher, lowering yields to 2.86% from Thursday’s 2.89%. Treasury prices move in opposite directions.

Oil prices gained $1.03 to $52.52 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices surged $11.20 to $1,254.80 U.S. an ounce.