Stocks meandered lower in midday trading on Monday in a broad decline that put the benchmark U.S. index on track for a third straight loss.
Shortly after noon, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 25 points or 0.2 per cent, to 13,318. The broader S&P 500 was down 3 points or 0.2 per cent, to 1430. In Canada, the S&P/TSX composite index was down 33 points or 0.3 per cent, to 12,383.
Energy stocks were by far the biggest laggards within the TSX after Ottawa killed a takeover deal of Progress Energy Corp. by Malaysia’s state-owned Petronas, raising broader concerns about the Canadian government’s views toward foreign-backed takeovers. The energy subindex within the TSX fell 1.2 per cent.
Progress fell 10.4 per cent, which is a milder decline than some observers had been fearing.
It didn’t help that crude oil prices also declined. In New York, oil fell to $89.50 (U.S.) a barrel, down 55 cents.
Within the S&P 500, technology stocks rose 0.4 per cent – marking the only gains among the 10 subindexes. Investors appeared to make little distinction between economically sensitive stocks and defensive stocks: Utilities fell 0.6 per cent while energy stocks, telecoms and industrials fell 0.5 per cent each.
Caterpillar Inc. rose 1.2 per cent after reporting a 49 per cent rise in its third-quarter earnings, but lowering its full-year outlook because of the slowing global economy.
In Europe, major indexes closed lower. The U.K.’s FTSE 100 fell 0.2 per cent and Germany’s DAX index fell 0.7 per cent.