Stocks Virtually Unchanged at Closing Bell

Golds Climb, Health-Care Staggers

Equities in Canada’s largest market hugged the flatline much of Tuesday, as resource stocks had trouble counteracting losses in health-care issues.

The TSX Composite Index swooned just 0.15 points south of breakeven to close Tuesday at 16,950.70

The Canadian dollar inched up 0.04 at 75.57 cents U.S.

Senior U.S. and Canadian officials were set to fly to Mexico City to work on the final changes to a languishing North American trade pact that could clear the way for a vote in the U.S. Congress before the end of the year.

Golds led the parade of winners, with OceanaGold up six cents, or 2.6%, to $2.38, while Barrick Gold improved 36 cents, or 1.6%, to $22.64.

Among energy concerns, Arc Resources added 23 cents, or 3.1%, to $7.73, while MEG Energy moved higher 18 cents, or 2.9%, to $6.46.

In the materials sector, Turquoise Hill gained four cents, or 5.4%, to 78 cents, while Hudbay Minerals tacked on 20 cents, or 4.3%, to $4.86.

Health-care issues were not so fortunate, with Canopy Growth faltering $1.76 or 6.2%, to $26.42, while HEXO subtracted 14 cents, or 4.1%, to $3.32.

In communications, TELUS Corp. subsided $1.20, or 2.3%, to $50.16, while Cineplex dissolved 48 cents, or 2%, to $24.18.

In techs, Constellation Software dropped $24.98, or 1.9%, to $1,279.49, while Quarterhill Inc. doffed three cents, or 1.8%, to $1.66.

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange moved backward 1.16 points to 536.33

In Toronto, the 12 subgroups were evenly divided to close Tuesday, with gold sprinting 1%, while energy gained 0.4%, and materials were 0.3% to the good.

The half-dozen laggards were weighed most by health-care, down 1.8%, while communications backpedaled 1%, and information technology surrendered 0.5%.

ON WALLSTREET

Stocks dipped on Tuesday as a looming U.S.-China trade deadline dampened investor sentiment.

The Dow Jones Industrials finished in the red 27.88 points to 27,881.72

The S&P 500 edged lower 3.44 points to 3,132.52

The NASDAQ wilted 5.64 points to 8,616.18, dragged down by Netflix. The video streamer fell 3.1% after an analyst at Needham downgraded it to underperform from hold.

The Wall Street Journal first reported the U.S. plans to delay slapping China with additional tariffs as both sides try to work out a so-called phase one trade deal. A deadline for the two countries had been set for Dec. 15. If an agreement wasn’t reached by then, the new U.S. tariffs would take effect.

Investors also kept an eye on the Federal Reserve as the central bank kicks off its last two-day monetary policy meeting of the year. The Fed is expected to hold rates steady.

Prices for the 10-Year U.S. Treasury lost a bit of ground, raising yields to 1.84% from Monday’s 1.83%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices nicked up 30 cents at $59.32 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices improved four dollars at $1,468.90 U.S. an ounce.