TSX down 2.4 per cent as plunging oil sends markets into tailspin

TORONTO -- The plunging price of oil wreaked havoc on global stock markets Wednesday, with major indexes in North America adding to big losses in Europe and Asia.

See Full Article

In mid-afternoon trading, the Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index was down 290.57 points or 2.42 per cent at 11,711.67.

The big drop on the TSX extended an almost unbroken string of losses since the Christmas break that have lowered Canada's main market to levels not seen since August 2012.

Markets in New York were also down sharply, with energy companies leading the decline as the March contract for benchmark crude oil fell $1.19 to US$28.38 a barrel.

The Dow Jones industrial average, off well over 500 points earlier in the day, was down 358.88 points or more than two per cent at 15,657.14. The S&P 500 fell 36.54 points or more than 1.9 per cent to 1,844.79 and the Nasdaq lost 44.44 points or about one per cent.

The commodity-sensitive loonie was poised to make a gain for the first time in more than two weeks, trading up 0.12 of a cent at 68.81 cents U.S. That came as the Bank of Canada decided to hold its trendsetting policy rate at 0.5 per cent.

Analysts had speculated there was a 50-50 chance the central bank might cut in order to stimulate an economic recovery.

Elsewhere in commodities, the March contract for natural gas fell a penny to US$2.10 per mmBtu, while February gold was up $17.10 at US$1,106.20 a troy ounce. Bullion is often seen as a safe haven in times of economic turmoil.

In Europe, Germany's DAX closed down 2.8 per cent while France's CAC-40 and Britain's FTSE 100 were both off 3.5 per cent.

In Asia, Japan's Nikkei index fell 3.7 per cent and is now in bear territory, down 20 per cent from its peak in June. The Hang Seng in Hong Kong lost 3.8 per cent, while China's Shanghai composite shed one per cent of its value.



Advertisements

Latest Economic News

  • Qatar merges 2 government-controlled gas producers

    Economic CTV News
    DUBAI, United Arab Emirates -- Qatar is merging its two government-controlled liquefied natural gas companies, streamlining distribution of the fuel as the OPEC nation grapples with a slump in energy prices. The Gulf country is the world's largest producer of LNG, which is natural gas chilled to liquid form for shipment on tanker ships. Source
  • CRTC tells dissatisfied TV customers to 'demand better' and shop around

    Economic CBC News
    The CRTC wants Canadians to know that they "have choices" when it comes to their TV services. And if they don't like their current TV plan, they should "demand better" and shop around. To assist consumers, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission has posted a series of shopping tips on its website. Source
  • Car recalls and real estate secrets: CBC's Marketplace consumer cheat sheet

    Economic CBC News
    Recalled cars on road Are you about to buy a lemon? Millions of vehicles on Canadian roads have an outstanding safety recall, about one in six. Even worse, there's nothing stopping dealerships from selling a car with an open recall that hasn't been fixed. Source
  • OPEC persuades 11 non-members to cut production in attempt to drain oil glut

    Economic CBC News
    OPEC has persuaded 11 non-members to cut oil production, a move aimed at draining a worldwide oil glut and boosting low prices that have squeezed government finances in Russia and Saudi Arabia. Officials said Saturday that non-members agreed to cut 558,000 barrels per day for six months starting Jan. Source
  • Howard Buffett stepping down from Coca-Cola board

    Economic CTV News
    OMAHA, Neb. -- Howard Buffett is planning to step down from the Coca-Cola Co.'s board, so he can spend more time running his foundation that focuses on improving agriculture in the developing world. Howard Buffett, who is billionaire investor Warren Buffett's oldest son, has served on Coke's board since 2010. Source
  • Socks and bonds: Edmonton pals conquer wacky dress sock market

    Economic CTV News
    Two childhood best friends from Edmonton are cashing in on the funky dress sock craze that seems to be sweeping the often bland world of professional menswear. Popular outlandish designs with names like aqua moustaches, surfing sloth, and mint flamingo party have seen Good Luck Sock grow its sales nearly four-fold and double the number of retailers that carry the company’s far-out footwear over the past year. Source
  • Trump's 'Buy American' policy could have major implications for Canada

    Economic CTV News
    WASHINGTON -- Donald Trump has made it clear he wants Buy American rules in the massive infrastructure program he's planning, launching an ardent defence of domestic-purchase requirements that can cause tensions with other countries. Critics of such Buy American provisions say they not only freeze out foreign competition, but hurt Americans too, by driving up the cost of construction, which means taxpayers get fewer roads and bridges for their buck and fewer construction jobs in the long…
  • Ontario steelmaker Stelco seeks court OK for moving ahead with restructuring

    Economic CTV News
    TORONTO -- Southern Ontario steelmaker Stelco is seeking court approval to move forward with its restructuring following an agreement with Bedrock Industries. Ontario Finance Minister Charles Sousa said in a statement Friday that Bedrock's proposal would mean that operations at the Hamilton and Lake Erie facilities would continue and 2,100 jobs would be preserved. Source
  • Cuba, Google strike deal to hike internet speed: sources

    Economic CTV News
    HAVANA -- Google and the Cuban government have struck a deal giving Cubans faster access to the internet giant's content, two people familiar with the agreement said Friday. Eric Schmidt, chairman of Google's parent company, will formally sign the deal Monday morning in Havana, the two people said. Source
  • Ford CEO says Trump threats won't change small car plans

    Economic CTV News
    DETROIT -- Ford Motor Co. is going ahead with plans to move small-car production from the U.S. to Mexico despite President-elect Donald Trump's recent threats to impose tariffs on companies that move work abroad. CEO Mark Fields said Ford's plan to move production of the Ford Focus from Michigan to Mexico will proceed, in part because U.S. Source