TSX closes lower amid export data, oil prices
Canada’s trade deficit grew in February as exports declined. This news, coupled with further decline for oil prices, weighed on the main index of the Toronto Stock Exchange Tuesday.
World stocks were broadly lower too with Shanghai managing to buck the trend. Indexes throughout the rest of Asia and Europe, together with Wall Street, all ended their sessions with losses as sentiment took a hit.
The S&P/TSX Composite Index closed down 31.49 (0.24 per cent)
The Dow Jones closed down 133.7 (0.75 per cent)
Oil is trending higher (Brent $37.94, WTI $35.97 at 4.20pm)
Gold is trending higher (1231.50 at 4.20pm)
The loonie us valued at U$0.7599
Trade deficit widened in February as exports fell
Canada’s trade deficit widened in February from $628 million in January to $1.9 billion, Statistics Canada reported Tuesday. Exports fell after a record high in January. Volume was down 2.2 per cent and value down 3.2 per cent. The value of exports to the US was down 5.8 per cent to $33.1 billion while exports to other countries were down 4.8 per cent to $10.5 billion. Imports were also down, by 2.6 per cent to $45.6 billion.
Economy can withstand the oil downturn says BMO’s CEO
The downturn in the oil sector does not mean that resources are no longer of value or that the overall Canadian economy is weak. That was the message from BMO’s Bill Downe, speaking at the bank’s AGM. He said that the lower price of oil does not turn an “enviable national asset into a liability.”
Mr Downe said that he expects BMO to see an increase in bad loans but only in line with a typical low in a commodity cycle. He called for growth of near 2 per cent for Canada this year with other parts of the economy offsetting some of the energy sector’s decline.
HBC reports 70 per cent rise in revenue
Hudson’s Bay Co. reported a strong fourth quarter Tuesday with revenue up 70 per cent to $4.486 billion and net earnings rising from $115 million in its third quarter to $370 million for the three months to the end of January 2016. That means $1.88 per diluted share.