Canada’s main stock index ended barely higher in subdued trade on Friday as small gains for some big banks and a boost for gold miners from higher bullion prices were offset by declines in pipeline companies and railway stocks.
“Coming into month-end people tend to not do much and they do even less in front of a long weekend,” said Rick Hutcheon, chief operating officer at RKH Investments, referring to U.S. markets being closed on Monday for Memorial Day. “We’re through earnings season, OPEC has done its thing, Trump hasn’t done anything silly this week, the economy is not doing anything,” he said.
The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index ended up 6.20 points, or 0.04 percent, at 15,416.93. It lost 0.3 percent in a holiday-shortened week. Decliners slightly outnumbered advancers, with overall trade volume at its lowest in months. Bombardier Inc gained 3.2 percent to C$2.25 after the planemaker said it had delivered its first CS300 aircraft to customer Swiss International Air Lines AG. Gold miners were among the strongest gainers, as political uncertainty led investors to shun riskier assets in favor of the precious metal, pushing it to its highest in nearly four weeks. Agnico Eagle Mining gained 1.7 percent to C$66.13 and Goldcorp was up 1.2 percent at C$18.47. The materials group, which includes precious and base metals miners and fertilizer companies, added 0.5 percent.
Pipeline companies ranked among the heaviest weights, with Enbridge Inc off 0.9 percent at C$52.48 and TransCanada Corp down 0.8 percent at C$63.28. Canadian National Railway Co fell 0.7 percent to C$103.70 and rival Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd lost 0.5 percent to C$213.74. Several of the country’s biggest banks gained following their earnings reports earlier in the week, with Toronto-Dominion Bank up 0.4 percent at C$64.25.