Canadian stocks were down slightly on Monday in midday trading, with U.S. markets closed in anticipation of a major storm walloping the east coast.
Shortly after noon, the S&P/TSX composite index was down 10 points or 0.1 per cent, to 12,291.
Progress Energy Resources Corp. rose 6.9 per cent on reports that Malaysian state oil firm Petronas is renewing a bid for the Canadian energy firm. Progress shares were hit hard after the Canadian government rejected a takeover offer from Petronas on Oct. 19. Petronas has said it will make further submissions to Industry Canada and has extended the date for the transaction to the end of November.
That has raised optimism about another deal in the works – the proposed $15-billion takeover of Nexen Inc. by China's CNOOC. Nexen shares, also hit following the Progress Energy rejection, were up 3.6 per cent on Monday.
MacDonald Dettwiler & Associates Ltd. rose 9.6 per cent following approval from the Federal Trade Commission on Friday for its takeover of Space Systems/Loral Inc.
Within the TSX, materials and financials fell 0.3 per cent each, while consumer discretionary stocks and industrials fell 0.4 per cent each. Technology stocks rose 1.2 per cent, and consumer staples and utilities rose 0.3 per cent each.
Among key commodities, gold fell to $1,707 (U.S.) an ounce, down $4. Crude oil fell to $85.61 a barrel, down 67 cents.