Two-week low for TSX as oil declines
Lower oil prices weighed heavily on the main index of the Toronto Stock Exchange Thursday, hitting energy and financials stocks. The index hit a two-week low for a time in morning trade but recovered some of the losses later in the session.
Around the world, oil was in focus and saw Asian and European markets closed with losses. Trade was generally thinner heading into the holiday weekend though.
Wall Street managed to end flat with the Dow and Nasdaq slightly higher while the S&P500 was just under the line.
The S&P/TSX Composite Index closed down 21.37 (0.16 per cent)
The Dow Jones closed up 13.42 (0.08 per cent)
Oil is trending lower (Brent $40.44, WTI $39.56 at 4.20pm)
Gold is trending lower (1217.30 at 4.20pm)
The loonie is valued at U$0.7551
EI beneficiaries higher in 7 provinces
The number of Canadians receiving employment insurance payments was much the same in January as it was in December but there was an increase of EI beneficiaries in seven provinces. Statistics Canada reported Thursday that there were 543,100 receiving benefits, an increase of 35,900 or 7.1 per cent from the previous January.
The largest increases were recorded in New Brunswick (+4.2 per cent), Newfoundland and Labrador (+3.2), Saskatchewan (+2.4) and Alberta (+2.0). On the other hand, there were fewer people receiving EI benefits in Quebec (-2.0 per cent) and British Columbia (-1.2).
Alberta royalties plan delayed by 3 weeks
It will be another three weeks before oil and natural gas companies in Alberta find out how they will be impacted by the provincial government’s calibration of drilling and operating costs and rates of return. The information was due by the end of March but the government says it has proved harder to ensure that the figures match up to the current state of the industry. It will now report its decisions on April 21.
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