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Canada’s main stock index gave back a small part of this week’s rally on Friday, as a record surge in COVID-19 cases in the United States raised fears of another round of lockdowns.

The United States reported more than 55,000 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday, a new daily global record for the pandemic.

The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index closed down 0.2% at 15,596.75. With U.S. stock markets closed for a public holiday, trading volumes were lower than usual.

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For the week, the TSX was up 2.7%, helped by data showing early signs of an economic rebound from the pandemic-driven slump.

The energy group retreated 0.4% on Friday as oil prices fell. U.S. crude futures were down 0.8%.

Industrials fell 0.3 percent, while the heavily-weighted financials group slipped 0.1%.

Canada’s biggest lenders confirmed they had joined a widespread boycott of Facebook Inc begun by U.S. civil rights groups seeking to pressure the world’s largest social media platform to take concrete steps to block hate speech.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau expressed disappointment at Air Canada’s decision to suspend some flights and said he hoped the carrier would restore services as the economy recovered. Air Canada’s shares ended up 0.5%.

Shares of entertainment and media company Cineplex Inc rose 7.5%, clawing back some of their recent decline.

Declining issues outnumbered advancing ones on the TSX by 130 to 88, for a 1.48-to-1 ratio on the downside.

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The index posted five new 52-week highs and no new lows.

Reuters

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