Trade Threats Cause Markets to Sink

May 31, 2019 (Baystreet.ca via COMTEX) —

Stocks lay prone by the day of May, more so after U.S. President Donald Trump threatened to undermine the current trade agreement with Mexico and Canada by slapping new tariffs on Mexico in the next few weeks.

The S&P/TSX Composite Index remained negative 51.75 points to finish the day, week and month at 16,037.49

The Canadian dollar fell 0.11 cents to 73.98 cents U.S.

Health-care stocks provided the heaviest anchor Friday, as Medical Facilities Corporation dropped 31 cents, or 2.5%, to $12.00, while Bausch Health Companies settled 99 cents, or 3.4%, to $27.98.

Among energy issues, Canadian Natural Resources lost eight cents to $36.45, while Imperial Oil deducted 52 cents, or 1.4%, to $36.17.

Financials were also bruised, as Manulife dived 44 cents, or 1.9%, to $22.70, while Scotiabank demurred 89 cents, or 1.3%, to $68.51.

Gold shone brightly to provide some positive vibes, Barrick Gold raced ahead 86 cents, or 5.4%, to $16.78, while Agnico Eagle Mines triumphed $2.16, or 3.8%, to $58.82.

Materials did what they could, as Frontier Lithium climbed half a cent, or 1.5%, to 34.5 cents, while KP Tissue took on a nickel to $8.15.

In the utilities sector, Hydro One gained 28 cents, or 1.2%, to $22.94, while Fortis improved 28 cents to $51.10.

On the economic calendar, Statistics Canada reported that Canada’s economy made its way upward during March. Gross Domestic Product grew 0.1% in the first quarter, the same growth rate as the fourth quarter of 2018.

Real gross national income rose 0.9%, largely because of higher export prices of crude oil and crude bitumen.

Elsewhere, the agency’s industrial product price index rose 0.8% in April, driven mainly by higher prices for energy and petroleum products, while the raw materials price index increased 5.6%, primarily

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