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Canadian stocks fall as Shopify tanks

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Canada’s main stock index fell on Tuesday, pulled down by a 14.4% slump in e-commerce giant Shopify and weakness in global markets ahead of key earnings reports and a big U.S. interest rate hike this week.

At 10:13 a.m. ET (14:13 GMT), the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index was down 68.36 points, or 0.36%, at 19,036.12.

Shares of Shopify, a pandemic darling, were headed for their worst daily performance since mid-February after the company laid off 10% of its workforce.

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“It is really shining a light on the real growth slowdown that we’re seeing here, in particular in e-commerce,” said James Telfser, portfolio manager at the Aventine Investment Counsel.

“When you look at Walmart, as well in the US with retail and the consumer discretionary sector, you see something similar.”

The broader information technology sector fell 4.9% in early trading.

Capping losses on the resource-heavy index were crude and metal stocks, tracking gains in commodities prices from supply concerns and a softening dollar.

The energy sector rose 0.8%, while the materials sector, which includes precious and base metals miners and fertilizer companies, gained 1.1%.

“It’s so backwards looking at this point that investors are not going to worry about that too much,” added Telfser, pointing to results from key mining and energy companies this week.

“Based on our experience when you’re going into a near recession, a recession or growth is slowing down as rapidly as it has, commodities are the last place you want to be. I think investors are going to slowly get that memo.”

In the United States, Wall Street fell after Walmart’s profit warning heightened fears in the retail sector that consumers were cutting back on discretionary spending in the face of decades-high inflation.

(Reporting by Bansari Mayur Kamdar and Johann M Cherian in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila)

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