Massive Selloff in Stocks Thursday

Energy, Health-care Take Biggest Lumps

Equity prices in Canada’s largest centre fell more than 150 points on Thursday, as prices of crude, one of the country's major exports, tumbled and pressured energy stocks.

The S&P/TSX Composite Index decreased 162.74 points, or 1%, to finish Thursday at 16,164.61

The Canadian dollar slumped 0.23 cents to 74.21 cents U.S.

MEG Energy fell 49 cents, or 9.9%, among the most on the TSX, to $4.44. Also suffering were shares of Crescent Point Energy, down 42 cents, or 8.3%, to $4.66.

In health-care, Bausch Health Companies lost 92 cents, or 2.8%, to $31.88, while Canopy Growth descended $1.85, or 3%, to $59.97.

Among industrials, Air Canada forfeited 22 cents to $39.50, while Canadian National Railways lost $1.81, or 1.5%, to $123.10.

Among gainers, Iamgold rose seven cents, or 2.2%, to $3.33, and Barrick Gold gained 12 cents, or 3.6%, to $16.13

Among communications issues, Rogers raced higher 75 cents, or 1.1%, to $71.15, while Shaw added 15 cents to $27.46.

In the real-estate sector, Colliers International Group gained 12 cents to $83.07.

On the economic slate, Statistics Canada says wholesale trade rose for the fourth consecutive month, up 1.4% to $64.1 billion in March.

The nation’s number crunchers attribute the hike to higher sales in six sub-sectors, accounting for 82% of total wholesale sales. The motor vehicle and motor vehicle parts and accessories sub-sector was the lone sub-sector to decline.

Elsewhere, the agency says, 436,600 people received regular Employment Insurance benefits in March, down 4,400, or 1%, from February.


The TSX Venture Exchange shed 8.54 points, or 1.4%, to 602.02.

Eight of the 12 Toronto subgroups remained negative up until the closing bell, with energy collapsing 4%, health-care swooning 3%, and industrial stocks fading 1.3%.

The four gainers were led by gold, up 1.1%, while communications compiled 0.6% and real-estate strengthened 0.3%.


Stocks fell sharply on Thursday as investors started to fear the U.S.-China trade war is slowing the economy.

The Dow Jones Industrials came off its lows of the day, but still fell 286.14 points, or 1%, to 25,490.47, as United Technologies lagged.

The Dow is now down more than 380 points in two days as Wall Street begins to realize the trade war may last a lot longer than previously expected.

The S&P 500 ditched 34.03 points, or 1.2%, to 2,822.24. The S&P 500 is down more than 4% so far in May along with the Dow.

The NASDAQ Composite dropped 122.56 points, or 1.6%, to 7,628.28

U.K.-based chip designer Arm Holdings said it suspended business with Huawei to comply with the U.S. blacklisting of the telecom company. Panasonic also said it stopped shipping some smartphone components to Huawei.

Vodafone and BT Group, the biggest phone carriers in the U.K., said they are removing Huawei phones from their 5G network plans.

Equities extended losses after IHS Markit said U.S. manufacturing activity grew at its slowest pace since September 2009 this month.

As yields fell on the weak economic data, bank shares including J.P. Morgan Chase and Bank of America were hit.

Shares of Qualcomm fell 1.5% while Xilinx declined 2.3%. Micron dropped 2.6%., and Lam Research declined 0.9%.

Apple shares also fell 1.7% after a UBS analyst cut his price target on the iPhone maker to $225 per share from $235.

Prices for the benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury climbed, lowering yields to 2.31% from Thursday’s 2.39%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices docked $3.32 to $58.10 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices leaped nine dollars to $1,283.20 U.S. an ounce.