Skip to main content

Canada’s main stock index opened lower on Monday as the energy sector lagged, and China’s move to impose additional duties on U.S. products revived global trade war concerns.

The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX Composite Index was down 67.96 points, or 0.44 per cent, to 15,299.33. Nine of the 11 main sectors were in the red.

U.S. stocks fell on Monday as China’s decision to raise import tariffs on U.S. products revived global trade war fears and technology stocks remained under pressure.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 69.28 points, or 0.29 per cent, to 24,033.83. The S&P 500 lost 10.53 points, or 0.398732 per cent, to 2,630.34. The Nasdaq Composite dropped 49.70 points, or 0.7 per cent, to 7,013.74.

China, late on Sunday, said it would increase tariffs by up to 25 percent on 128 U.S. products, escalating a spat between the world’s biggest economies. The move came in response to U.S. duties on imports of aluminum and steel.

“That’s going to start stoking fears of trade wars and protectionism. The market doesn’t really like that,” said Andre Bakhos, managing director at New Vines Capital LLC in Bernardsville, New Jersey.

“And if it escalates, the questions could be on if China is going to buy our bonds. We have speculation out there, but it could be some profit taking and some risk-off mentality for the moment.”

U.S. President Donald Trump is separately preparing to impose tariffs of more than $50 billion targeting “largely high-technology” Chinese products.

Amazon fell almost 2 per cent in early trading after Mr. Trump launched his second attack over the weekend, accusing the world’s biggest online retailer of getting unfairly cheap rates from the U.S. Postal Service and not paying enough tax.

Facebook fell 1.1 per cent as the data scandal last month continued to weigh. On Monday, brokerage Pivotal Research slashed its price target, citing a faster-than-expected deceleration in the social media company’s revenue growth.

Hit by concerns about a possible trade war, rising interest rates and valuations in the technology sector, the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average posted their worst declines in more than two years in the quarter ended March.

Nervous investors are hoping an unusually strong U.S. earnings season can restore some of the optimism that characterized equity markets last year.

Tesla shares fell about 4 per cent after the electric car maker said the Model X vehicle that recently crashed was on Autopilot and also announced a recall.

Oil rose towards $70 a barrel on Monday, lifted by a drop in drilling activity in the United States and concerns that Washington could reintroduce sanctions against Iran.

U.S. drillers cut seven oil rigs in the week to March 29, bringing the total down to 797, the first decline in three weeks. The rig count is closely watched as an indicator of future U.S. oil output.

Brent crude, the international benchmark, rose 47 cents to $69.81 a barrel. It was still below its 2018 high of $71.28 reached on Jan. 25. U.S. crude added 27 cents to $65.21.

Trading volume was lower than normal as many countries were still on Easter holiday.

“The market is set for a re-test of the highs of 2018,” said Olivier Jakob, oil analyst at Petromatrix.

“The Iranian factor is going to be a very significant input for the next four weeks. It is going to be an underlying support for the whole month.”

U.S. President Donald Trump has threatened to pull out of a 2015 international nuclear deal with Tehran under which Iranian oil exports have risen. He has given the European signatories a May 12 deadline to “fix the terrible flaws” of the deal.

Oil has risen from a multi-year low near $27 in January 2016, helped by production cuts led by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and Russia, which started in 2017 and are due to run until the end of 2018.

Report an editorial error

Report a technical issue

Tickers mentioned in this story

Study and track financial data on any traded entity: click to open the full quote page. Data updated as of 28/05/24 4:00pm EDT.

SymbolName% changeLast
TSLA-Q
Tesla Inc
-1.39%176.75
AMZN-Q
Amazon.com Inc
+0.77%182.15

Interact with The Globe