Canadian stocks fell for the fourth day, the longest streak of losses since November, as commodities extended a week-long drop and U.S. jobless claims rose more than forecast.
Petrominerales Ltd. declined 4.5 percent as oil prices retreated. OceanaGold Corp. fell 3.4 percent after the metal slumped toward a bear market. Lululemon Athletica Inc., the yoga-wear maker that recalled women’s pants, gained 1.9 percent after saying its chief product officer will step down.
The Standard & Poor’s/TSX Composite Index (SPTSX) fell 23.45 points, or 0.2 percent, to 12,398.67 at 10:19 a.m. in Toronto, poised for the lowest close since Dec. 28. The benchmark gauge declined 2.1 percent yesterday, erasing its gain for the year as concern over global economic growth weighed on commodities.
Gold extended losses for a third day and silver, platinum and palladium declined. Oil fell for a second day as more Americans than projected filed applications for unemployment benefits last week and the euro weakened against the dollar.
Commodity shares account for 40 percent of the benchmark equity index by weighting.
U.S. data showed today that jobless claims increased by 28,000 to 385,000 in the week ended March 30, the highest since Nov. 24. The median forecast of economists surveyed by Bloomberg called for a drop to 353,000.
Central banks in Japan and Europe reassured investors that they will keep economies awash in cash to bolster growth. ECB President Mario Draghi said policy will remain accommodative after the central bank kept its benchmark rate at 0.75 percent. The Bank of Japan said it will buy longer-term government bonds as part of its asset-purchase program.
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