Stocks Wobble in First Hour Friday

Stelco, Cenovus in Focus

Equity markets in Canada opened lower on Friday as the prospect of faster rate hikes by the Bank of Canada and the U.S. Federal Reserve weighed on metal prices, pulling down major mining stocks.

The S&P/TSX Composite descended 58.01 points to begin Friday at 20,486.10.

The Canadian dollar shed 0.14 cents at 78.31 cents U.S.

Cineworld Group said on Friday Cineplex filed an appeal against its plea challenging an order the British cinema operator pay $1.23 billion Canadian in damages to Cineplex for abandoning a planned takeover.

Cineplex shares dipped eight cents to $12.09.

National Bank raised the rating on Agnico Eagle Mines to outperform from sector perform. Agnico shares lost 49 cents to $59.00.

RBC raised the target price on Cenovus Energy to $24.00 from $20.00. Cenovus shares captured 16 cents to $18.62.

RBC cut the target price on Stelco Holdings to $53.00 from $64.00. Stelco shares backed off 21 cents to $35.67.

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange docked 1.54 points to 828.68.

Seven of the 12 TSX subgroups were lower in the first hour, with materials sliding 1.3%, gold down 1.2%, and industrials weaker by 1.1%.

The five gainers were led by energy, up 1.2%, communications, stronger by 0.6%, and utilities, up 0.3%.

ON WALLSTREET

The market is set to wrap up a roller-coaster week with the S&P 500 headed for its worst month since March 2020.

The Dow Jones Industrials stepped back 175.79 points soon after the opening bell to 33,984.99

The S&P 500 sank 11.82 points to 4,314.69. The S&P 500 is wading into correction territory, down more than 10% from its intraday record.

The NASDAQ withered 32.34 points to 13,320.44. The NASDAQ sits more than 18% from its high.

The major averages have experienced outsized swings each day this week — including the Dow making up a more than 1,000-point intraday deficit to close higher on Monday for the first time ever.

The Dow and S&P 500 are both headed for four consecutive losing weeks. The NASDAQ has dropped 3% this week, on track for its fifth straight negative week.

Shares of Apple rose more than 3% after the company reported its largest single quarter in terms of revenue ever even amid supply challenges and the lingering effects of the pandemic. Apple beat analyst estimates for sales in every product category except iPads.

Chevron shares fell more than 3% after missing Wall Street earnings expectations. Dow component Caterpillar dipped more than 4% even after it topped profit estimates.

December’s core personal consumption expenditures price index, the Fed’s preferred inflation gauge, jumped 4.9% from the year prior, the Commerce Department reported Friday. The PCE jump is higher than economists expected and the hottest reading since September 1983.

Along with the inflation numbers, personal income rose 0.3% for the month, a touch lower than the 0.4% estimate.

Prices for 10-year Treasurys were unchanged, keeping yields at Thursday’s 1.81%.

Oil prices hiked $1.62 to $88.23 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices retreated $6.50 to $1,788.5 U.S. an ounce.