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Stocks Struggle to Reach Breakeven

Enbridge, Obsidian in Focus

Stock markets in Canada remained negative midday Friday, fell on Friday and was set for weekly losses, weighed down by energy and financial shares as turmoil in the European banking sector soured the mood.

The TSX stayed in the red by noon hour EDT 86.45 points to 19,377.47.

The Canadian dollar subtracted 0.33 cents to 72.57 cents U.S.

Among company news, Enbridge found its way upward, 10 cents, to $50.09, after the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers extended the federal permitting process for the oil distributor's proposed Great Lakes Tunnel.

Shares of Obsidian Energy fell eight cents, or 1%, to $8.14, after Alberta's energy regulator said the oil and gas producer had triggered a series of earthquakes in the province between November and March.

On the economic front, Statistics Canada reported retail sales hiked 1.4% to $66.4 billion in January. Sales increased in seven of nine subsectors and were led by increases at motor vehicle and parts dealers and gasoline stations and fuel vendors.


The TSX gave back 0.71 points to 607.94.

Eight of the 12 TSX subgroups were lower, as energy trudged lower 1%, while health-care lost 0.9%, and financials were off 0.8%.

The four gainers were led by gold, better by 2%, utilities, ahead 0.6%, and consumer staples, increasing 0.4%.


Stocks recovered some of their earlier session declines Friday as Deutsche Bank shares pared back some losses.

The Dow Jones Industrials clambered its way into the green 36.69 points to 32,141.94.

The S&P 500 poked higher 1.41 points to 3,950.13.

The NASDAQ Composite fell 14.95 points to 11,772.44.

Deutsche Bank’s U.S.-listed shares slid about 2.6% after the the German lender’s credit default swaps jumped, but without an apparent catalyst. The move appeared to raise concerns once again over the health of the European banking industry. Earlier this month, Swiss regulators forced a UBS acquisition of rival Credit Suisse. Deutsche Bank shares traded off their worst levels of the session, which caused major U.S. indexes to also cut their losses.

Shares of major U.S. banks were under pressure. Citigroup and Bank of America shares fell more than 2%. JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo shares fell more than 1% each.

For the week, the Dow and S&P 500 are slightly higher, while the NASDAQ has gained roughly 0.9%.

Prices for the 10-year Treasury gained a marginal amount of ground, lowering yields to 3.39% from Thursday’s 3.40%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices sagged 82 cents to $69.14 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices gave up $2.30 to $1,993.60 U.S. an ounce.