Resource Stocks Burden TSX

Nutrien, Absolute in Focus

Material stocks pressured Canada's main stock index at the open on Tuesday, as gold prices tumbled.

The S&P/TSX Composite Index slid 20.31 points to open Tuesday at 16,585.19

The Canadian dollar bounced 0.30 cents higher to 75.19 cents U.S.

A report in the Globe and Mail says Federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau could lose his job amid disagreements with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau over how to steer the economy through the coronavirus outbreak.

Nutrien Ltd. on Monday cut its annual adjusted profit forecast as weaker-than-normal industrial demand held back prices for ammonia and urea ammonium nitrate.

Shares in Nutrien gathered 59 cents, or 1.2%, to $49.59.

BMO raised the target price on Absolute Software to $18 from $12.50. Absolute shares docked 59 cents, or 5.8%, to $15.03.

TD Securities raised the target price on Equinox Gold to $25.00 from $21.00. Equinox shares dropped 72 cents, or 4.4%, to $15.72.

RBC raised the target price on Teranga Gold to $20.00 from $13.00. Teranga shares slipped 86 cents, or 5.7%, to $14.15.

Vancouver based NetCents announced a collaboration with Visa introducing the NetCents Visa credit card. The co-branded card enables crypto currency wallet holders and traders real-time seamless purchasing power using crypto currencies for in-store and online transactions with the more than 40 million merchants that accept Visa worldwide.

NetCents shares doffed six cents, or 4.2%, to $1.38.

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange docked 25.41 points, or 3.4%, to kick off Tuesday at 722.36.

Eight of the 12 TSX subgroups were moving forward in the first hour, with energy gushing 2.7%, consumer discretionary stocks progressing 1.9%, and real-estate building 1.3% higher.

The four laggards were weighed most by gold, down 6%, materials, stumbling 4.7%, and health-care, off 1.8%.

ON WALLSTREET

The S&P 500 rose on Tuesday, putting it on the cusp of a fresh all-time high amid a rotation out of technology shares and into stocks that would benefit from a reopening of the economy and a vaccine, such as cruise lines and airlines.

The Dow Jones Industrials leaped 294.07 points, or 1.1%, to 28,085.51, soon after Tuesday’s open.

The S&P 500 chugged ahead 8.88 points to 3,369.35, and was within half a percentage point of reaching its Feb. 19 record of 3,393.52

The once high-flying NASDAQ wilted 57.78 points to start the session at 10,910.57

Sentiment was lifted overnight after local news agencies reported Russian President Vladimir Putin claimed the country had given regulatory approval for the world’s first COVID-19 vaccine.

While there was skepticism about whether Russia had developed a safe vaccine so quickly, the news triggered optimism from investors about the race for an inoculation and perhaps that the market isn’t pricing in how quickly a valid one could be ready.

Shares of companies that would benefit most from a vaccine jumped in early trading. American Airlines gained 6.5%. Norwegian Cruise Lines climbed 6.5% as well. Casino shares rose. Mall owner Simon Property Group was higher by 5%. Gap shares climbed by 4.9%.

Major tech shares struggled. Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix and Microsoft were all down at least 1%. Alphabet slid 0.6%.

Prices for the 10-Year Treasury stumbled, raising yields to 0.64% from Monday’s 0.58%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions

Oil prices added 50 cents to $42.44 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices lost $80.50 to $1,959.20 U.S. an ounce.