TSX Ends Positive

Suncor, CES in Forefront

Equities in Canada’s largest market held onto gains Tuesday after notching their lowest close in more than two years in the previous session.

This, as Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz said interest rate hikes could be interrupted amid signs of slowing growth and low oil prices.

The S&P/TSX Composite Index kept its head above water 54.24 points to finish Tuesday at 14,416.89

The Canadian dollar eased 0.30 cents to 74.25 U.S.

Energy stocks were bludgeoned, as CES Energy Solutions Corp fell six cents, or 1.9%, to end the session at $3.13. Suncor Energy stepped back nine cents to $39.00

Among utilities, Fortis Inc. dipped 11 cents to $46.34, while ATCO lost five cents to $39.00

Health-care lost their grip on whatever gains they had during the day, as Bausch Health Companies collapsed 70 cents, or 2.4%, to $28.22.

Gold topped the list of gaining stocks, as Barrick Gold advanced 39 cents, or 2.1%, to $18.69, while Goldcorp shone brighter 44 cents, or 3.5%. to $13.05.

In the tech sector Shopify rose $7.35, or 4.2%, to $181.15, after Wells Fargo initiated with an "outperform" rating on the e-commerce company's shares.

BlackBerry picked up eight cents to $10.08.

Among materials issues, Agnico Eagle Mines strengthened $1.44, or 2.7%, to $54.32, while First Quantum Minerals tacked on eight cents to $11.05.

Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz said on Monday that the pace of interest rate hikes in Canada could be interrupted or sped up depending on the economic circumstances.

On the economic slate, Statistics Canada reported that the number of Canadians drawing regular employment insurance benefits fell for a third consecutive month, down 6,500 or 1.5% from September to 439,600 in October.

Elsewhere, manufacturing sales edged down 0.1% in October to $58.2 billion, following four increases in the previous five months.

Lower sales at wood product and primary metal industries were largely offset by higher sales at food and machinery industries.

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange backtracked 3.6 points to 543.19

Nine of the 12 TSX subgroups remained positive on the day, as gold sprinted 2.8%, information technology strengthened 2.2%, and materials hiked 2%.

The three laggards were energy, down 1.2%, while utilities and health-care each sank 0.3%.

ON WALLSTREET

The S&P 500 closed just above its 2018 low Tuesday as stocks struggled to keep a rebound alive throughout the session.

The Dow Jones Industrials fell from their highs of the day, but still took on 82.66 points to end the day at 23,675.64, amid gains in Boeing and Goldman Sachs, which posted its first positive day in 10 on Tuesday.

The broader index gained 0.22 points to 2,546.16, after trimming a rally of more than 1% and falling into negative territory in afternoon trading. While consumer discretionary stocks posted the strongest performance, a 2.3% decline in energy stocks kept a lid on the major indexes. The S&P 500 also hit a new intraday low for the year, falling to 2,528.71 before recovering.

The Dow and S&P 500, which are both in corrections, are on track for their worst December performance since the Great Depression in 1931, down more than 7% so far for the month. The S&P 500 is now in the red for 2018 by 4%.

The NASDAQ acquired 30.18 points to 6,783.91, as Amazon, Apple and Netflix all traded higher. Facebook stock rallied 2.4% while Google-parent Alphabet added 1.7%.

The Federal Reserve is widely expected to hike its benchmark overnight lending rate for a fourth and final time of 2018 when it concludes a two-day policy meeting on Wednesday.

Stock of energy companies fell across the board as oil prices sank more than 7% to a 15-month low on Tuesday. Exxon Mobil fell 2.7%, Chevron lost 2.4% and ConocoPhillips dropped 1.9% as the U.S. and Russia continue to pump at record levels ahead of planned output cuts by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies.

Also helping sentiment was White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders, who said that the Trump administration wants to avoid a partial government shutdown and has found alternative revenues to build President Donald Trump’s border wall.

Prices for the benchmark for the 10-year U.S. Treasury grew, lowering yields to 2.83% from Monday’s 2.86%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions

Oil prices dropped $3.66 to $46.22 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices regained $1.50 to $1,253.30 U.S. an ounce.