TORONTO – (April 7, 2011) Clearlease.com Reports The S&P/TSX Composite index (Interi (^GSPTSE) was lower Thursday as energy and mining stocks failed to respond to higher oil and metal prices while traders dealt with more uncertainty after another earthquake struck Japan.
The S&P/TSX composite index lost 76.62 points to 14,126.03 after Japan’s northeastern coast was hit with a strong aftershock that measured 7.4 on the Richter scale. But the index moved off session lows after a tsunami warning for a coastal area already ravaged by last month’s tsunami was cancelled.
“I think it’s indicative of the ability of this market to stomach all kinds of things,” said Chris King, portfolio manager at Morgan Meighen and Associates.
“For quite a long time, anything negative really drove the market down and now we’re in the phase where anything negative might slow the market but it doesn’t break its spirit.”
The TSX Venture Exchange gained 7.48 points to 2,370.92.
The Canadian dollar moved up 0.14 of a US cent to 104.26 cents US as investors also took in an interest rate hike by the European Central Bank.
The energy sector lost 0.2 per cent as the May crude contract on the New York Mercantile Exchange was up $1.37 to US$110.20 a barrel.
But with oil prices up almost 30 per cent since mid-February, as traders mull the impact of Libya’s civil conflict, a weakening U.S. dollar and China’s fourth interest rate hike since October, energy stocks were backing off as analysts expect crude prices to back off somewhat.
“In the next couple of weeks, I would bet oil will be down a couple of bucks,” said John Kurgan, senior markets strategist at Lind Waldock, adding it would be for the short term.
“Longer term I can see this thing going higher, there’s always the possibility of a surprise in the Mideast, that’s been off the front pages. It will come back.”
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