Stocks Dawdle at Open

Trican, Vermilion in Focus

Canada's main stock index opened lower on Thursday, dragged down by shares of energy companies on the back of weak crude prices.

The S&P/TSX Composite Index slid 9.92 points to open Thursday at 16,474.29

The Canadian dollar slipped 0.13 cents to 76.48 cents U.S.

Aurora Cannabis said it had secured a two-year contract to supply medical cannabis to the Italian government. Aurora shares thundered lower 36 cents, or 3.7%, to $9.32.

Credit Suisse raised the rating on Kinder Morgan Canada to neutral from underperform. Kinder shares galloped 47 cents, or 4.2%, to $11.60.

CIBC cut the rating on Trican Well Service to neutral from outperform. Trican shares were unchanged at 97 cents.

RBC cut the rating on Vermilion Energy to sector perform from outperform. Vermilion ducked lower $1.10, or 4%, to $26.49.

On the economic front, Statistics Canada reported 441,300 people received regular Employment Insurance benefits in May, similar to the previous month.

Lower numbers in Alberta, Nova Scotia, Saskatchewan, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward Island were offset by increases in Quebec and Ontario.

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange eased back 1.56 points to 585.63

All but the 12 Toronto subgroups were lower in the first hour, with health-care pointing downward 1%, gold duller in price by 0.7%, and materials, off 0.5%.

The three gainers were information technology, better by 0.5%, and industrials and financials, each collecting 0.1%.

ON WALLSTREET

Stocks fell on Thursday as investors were concerned about the latest batch of quarterly corporate reports.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 8.92 points to begin Thursday at 27,210.93, as UnitedHealth dropped 1.5%.

The S&P 500 shed 1.49 points to 2,982.93 at the open, led lower by the communications services sector.

The NASDAQ Composite fell 10.63 points to 8,174.58

Netflix shares plunged more than 9% after the streaming giant reported a surprise loss in U.S. subscribers coupled with slower-than-expected international membership growth.

Those metrics — which are key for Netflix — offset a better-than-expected earnings per share result for the previous quarter.

IBM shares, meanwhile, fell at the open before recovering after the company reported its fourth consecutive revenue decline. Declining sales from IBM’s IT division offset growth in its cloud business.

Morgan Stanley posted better-than-expected quarterly results, driven by its wealth management and fund divisions. The stock rose 0.7%.
So far, more than 12% of S&P 500 companies have reported quarterly results this earnings season. Of those companies, nearly 84% have reported better-than-expected earnings

Prices for the benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury moved lower, raising yields to 2.06% from Wednesday’s 2.05%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices lost 56 cents at $56.22 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices slid $3.50 to $1,419.80 U.S. an ounce.