The Toronto stock market was little changed as traders look to a weekend meeting of G20 finance ministers that’s expected to be dominated by worries that countries are using their currencies for economic gain.
The meeting in Moscow takes place amid speculation of a “currency war”, where countries competitively devalue their currencies to gain a competitive edge. Japan, the world’s third-largest economy, faces charges that it is trying to lower the value of the yen to stimulate its economy.
The S&P/TSX composite index was 14.28 points lower to 12,707.51.
The Dow Jones industrials edged up 9.21 points to 13,982.6, the Nasdaq was ahead 4.06 points to 3,202.71 while the S&P 500 index added 1.03 points to 1,522.41 while oil lost $1.44 to US$95.87 a barrel.
Telecoms led TSX advancers after Rogers Communications Inc. exceeded analysts’ expectations in the fourth quarter of 2012. Rogers posted quarterly net income of $455-million or 88 cents a share, beating expectations of 72 cents.
Rogers’ revenue was $3.26-billion against expectations of $3.19-billion.
Rogers also announced that president and CEO Nadir Mohamed will retire in January 2014 but will continue to lead the company through 2013. Its stock was ahead 83 cents to $46.30.
And Telus Corp. said that its quarterly net earnings rose almost 23 per cent from a year ago to $291 million, or 89 cents per share. Revenue rose six per cent to $2.85-billion from $2.69-billion and its shares were down 23 cents to $66.55.
Gold stocks led TSX decliners as April bullion on the New York Mercantile Exchange lost $20.80 to$1,614.70 (U.S.) an ounce. Goldcorp Inc. lost 72 cents to C$33.95.
The base metals sector slipped 0.3 per cent while March copper in New York declined two cents to $3.72 (U.S.) a pound. Teck Resources declined 30 cents to $33.90 (Canadian).
The Canadian dollar was down 0.52 of a cent to 99.36 cents U.S. as data showed that Canadian manufacturing sales fell 3.1 per cent during December. That was much larger than the 0.8 per cent slide that economists had expected and the largest pullback since May 2009.
And as The Globe’s Tara Perkins reports this morning, “Canadian home sales in January were 5.2 per cent lower than the same month last year, but edged up 1.3 per cent from December, the Canadian Real Estate Association said Friday.”
With files from Globe Staff
Inside the Market editor Darcy Keith is away and will return next week.