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Canada’s main stock index edged lower on Monday as falling commodity prices pulled down energy and gold mining shares.

At 11:30 a.m. ET, the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index was down 79.53 points, or 0.51 per cent, at 15,390.57.

Latest domestic economic data showed wholesale trade edged down by 0.1 per cent in August from prior month, as weaker sales in the building material and supplies and motor vehicles and parts subsectors led the decline, Statistics Canada said on Monday.

Nine of the 11 major sectors within the index were lower, led by a 1.3-per-cent drop in material sector.

Kinross Gold Corp. fell 3.9 per cent, while Goldcorp Inc. and Wheaton Precious Metals Corp. were down 2.3 per cent

The energy sector dropped 0.3 per cent. Oil slipped below $80 a barrel as Saudi Arabia pledged to raise its crude production to a record, two weeks before U.S. sanctions potentially choke off Iranian crude supplies

LNG Canada challenged competing U.S. liquefied natural gas (LNG) projects, saying many could end up “dead in the water” as long as China keeps its tariff on U.S. imports of the fuel as part of the trade war between the countries.

The financials sector edged down 0.4 per cent while the industrials sector rose 0.2 per cent.

Cannabis companies led a 5.8-per-cent drop in health care stocks. Aurora Cannabis Inc. fell 10.2 per cent, while Canopy Growth Co. and Aphria were down 8.8 per cent and 8 per cent, respectively.

Major U.S. stock indexes were mostly lower in midday trading Monday as losses in banks and health care companies outweighed gains elsewhere. Energy companies also fell along with the price of crude oil. Technology companies rebounded after an early tumble. Smaller companies were doing better than the rest of the market. Toy makers slumped after Hasbro’s latest quarterly results disappointed investors.

The S&P 500 index fell 8 points, or 0.3 per cent, to 2,758 as of noon Eastern Time. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 129 points, or 0.5 per cent, to 25,315. The Nasdaq gained 32 points, or 0.4 per cent, to 7,481. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks picked up 7 points, or 0.5 per cent, to 1,549.

Investors have been worried in recent weeks about potential threats to corporate growth, including rising interest rates, trade tensions between the U.S. and China, and some sluggish reports about housing construction and sales.

This week marks the peak of the quarterly earnings calendar as many big-name companies report their latest results, including Caterpillar, Amazon and Google’s parent company, Alphabet.

“The earnings results have the potential to stabilize the market, but what investors are really keen on hearing from companies is what the sustainability of the earnings outlook is, especially in light of the concerns of the potential impact from tariffs,” said Laura Kane, head of Investment Themes Americas at UBS Wealth Management Research.

Banks and other financial companies took losses. Synchrony Financial fell 3.5 per cent to $30.26.

Hasbro slumped 5.2 per cent to $92.97 after the toy maker reported disappointing third-quarter results, partly due to lost sales following the demise of Toys R Us. Hasbro also said it will cut jobs as it deals with the effects of Toys R Us bankruptcy. Rival Mattel also declined, shedding 1.8 per cent to $13.97.

Benchmark U.S. crude fell 0.1 per cent to $69.02 per barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, was flat at $79.72 per barrel in London.

The slide in oil prices weighed on energy stocks. Halliburton fell 2.2 per cent to $36.73.

Bond prices were little changed. The yield on the 10-year Treasury held at 3.19 per cent.The dollar strengthened to 112.82 yen from 112.60 yen on Friday. The euro fell to $1.1469 from $1.1510.

Germany’s DAX slipped 0.3 per cent and France’s CAC-40 lost 0.6 per cent. Britain’s FTSE 100 fell 0.1 per cent. In Asia, the Hang Seng in Hong Kong surged 2.3 per cent, while Japan’s Nikkei 225 index reversed early losses, gaining 0.4 per cent. The Kospi in South Korea added 0.3 per cent. Australia’s S&P-ASX 200 countered the trend, shedding 0.6 per cent. Shares rose in Taiwan, Singapore and Indonesia, but fell in Thailand.

Reuters and The Associated Press

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