Teck, Iamgold also in spotlight
The Toronto stock market was lower Friday amid strong earnings from the tech sector while commodity prices eased on concerns over Chinese moves to reform its industrial sector.
The S&P/TSX Composite Index fell 21.24 points to close the day at 12,647.90
The Canadian dollar recovered 0.06 cents to 97.35 centsU.S.
Celestica Inc. was a bright spot on the TSX, up 62 cents, or 6.3%, to $10.40 after the electronics manufacturing company posted a profit of $28.0 million, or 15 cents per share, up from $23.6 million, or 11 cents per share, a year earlier. Adjusted earnings were 21 cents a share, four cents better than analysts expected.
Commodities were lower as demand concerns pushed September copper down eight cents to $3.11 U.S. a pound. The mining sector pushed ahead as Teck Resources advanced for a second day following earnings that beat expectations, up 70 cents to $25.11.
The resource sector has been the worst performer this earnings season, largely because of falling commodity prices amid a weak global economy.
The energy sector declined, as Canadian Natural Resources fell $1.50 or 4.5% to $32.20.
The gold sector grew as Iamgold Corp. gained three cents to $5.48. The sector had been down about 50% earlier in the month as bullion prices retreated on speculation about the future of economic stimulus measures in the U.S.
Elsewhere on the earnings front, TransCanada Corp earned $365 million or 52 cents per share in net income attributable to shareholders in the second quarter, up from $272 million or 39 cents per share a year earlier.
On an adjusted basis, the company reported $357 million or 51 cents per share of "comparable earnings," up from $300 million or 43 cents per share in the second quarter of 2012 and in line with analyst estimates. Its shares were two cents higher to $46.43.
The TSX looks set to snap a run of four, consecutive weekly gains following weak earnings reports from the resource sector, in particular from Cenovus Energy and PotashCorp in a reflection of falling commodity prices.
The telecom sector has also been negative this week, despite a strong earnings report from Rogers Communications as investors mull the effects of a possible entry into the sector by U.S. company Verizon Communications. Rogers shares fell five cents to $41.36.
The TSX Venture Exchange gained 1.12 points to 925.29
The 14 Toronto subgroups were evenly divided by the close into gainers and losers. Gold hiked 1.4%, while the metals and mining and material groups each picked up 0.9%.
The seven laggards were weighed by energy stocks, off 1.1%, while health-care and industrials each faded 0.4%.
U.S. stocks pared earlier losses Friday as investors awaited economic reports and news from the Federal Reserve next week.
The Dow Jones Industrials actually gained 3.22 points to greet the closing bell at 15,558.80. Earlier, the blue-chip index had been down more than 150 points.
The S&P 500 index recovered 1.40 points to 1,691.65. The NASDAQ finished in the green 7.98 points to 3,613.17
Tech shares have been the biggest drivers this week, boosted by strong earnings from Apple and Facebook , but weak results from Amazon and Expedia put pressure on the sector Friday.
Expedia was the biggest drag on both the Nasdaq and S&P 500 Friday. Shares of the online travel company plunged 24% on a worse-than-expected earnings report.
Amazon shares were lower after the online retailer posted a surprise loss.
And Zynga's stock sank after the online gaming company issued a weak outlook for the third quarter and said it's not going to pursue online gambling in the United States.
But the losses were offset by shares of Activision Blizzard, which surged more than 21% after the maker of games such as World of Warcraft and Call of Duty said it was striking out on its own through an $8.2-billion U.S. deal.
Starbucks shares rose after the coffee merchant delivered better-than-expected quarterly earnings and sales.
Halliburton stock rose nearly 4% after the Justice Department said the oilfield services firm would plead guilty to destroying computer test results that had been sought as evidence in the Deepwater Horizon disaster.
Tesla Motors shares gained after Deutsche Bank upgraded the electric car maker.
In economic news, the University of Michigan and Thomson Reuters said a key measure of consumer sentiment rose to 85.1 in July, the highest level in six years.
Prices for the 10-year U.S. Treasury gained back some ground, lowering yields to 2.56% from Thursday's 2.59%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.
Oil prices gave back 84 cents to $104.65 U.S. a barrel.
Gold prices were three dollars stronger to $1,331.80 U.S. an ounce.