TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index declined on Thursday as oil prices plunged after the outcome of an Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries meeting disappointed investors, dragging down shares of energy producers.
The OPEC meeting was the market’s focus as it came after months of depressed oil prices, which have been weighed by concerns about increasing supply and sluggish demand for the commodity.
The cartel did not announce the output cut investors were hoping for, and oil prices tumbled to a four-year low.
Energy shares, which have lost nearly a third of their value since the middle of June, slumped 6.9 percent on Thursday.
“It’s another leg down. There doesn’t seem to be a bottom for oil anytime soon,” said Marcus Xu, president and portfolio manager at M.Y. Capital Management Corp in Vancouver, who said he was holding on to his energy investments.
“At the end of the day, these are big companies and they’re going to be around,” he added. “They are still going to produce oil that will be needed for a lot of things. There’s pretty deep value in these companies right now.”
The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index closed down 115.97 points, or 0.77 percent, at 14,922.44.
Among shares of energy producers, Suncor Energy Inc gave back 5.7 percent to C$36.86 and had the biggest negative influence on the market. Canadian Natural Resources Ltd lost 7.1 percent to C$38.45.
Financials, the index’s most heavily weighted sector, advanced 0.5 percent. Royal Bank of Canada climbed 0.7 percent to C$83.33, and Bank of Montreal rose 0.4 percent to C$83.88.
Editing by Nick Zieminski