Canada Clips Gm Stake, Sells 30 Million Shares

The market braced for a possible move by the Fed to begin unwinding its stimulus program. Investors expect the U.S. central bank to announce its intentions at a policy meeting next week. Investors also followed developments about Syria, with Russia and the United States trying to hash out a deal to disarm Syria of its chemical weapons and prevent military action. Bullion, which had gained sharply in recent weeks on news of escalating tensions in Syria as it was seen a safe-haven asset, shed nearly 3 percent on Thursday and hit a four-week low. The price of silver tumbled 4.3 percent. “The factors that had inspired the big rally in gold and silver a couple of weeks ago are unraveling,” said Colin Cieszynski, senior market analyst at CMC Markets Canada. “Traders are still confused about what’s going to go on, particularly with tapering and the situation in Syria,” he added. “People aren’t completely sure about which way to go.” The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index was down 84.21 points, or 0.66 percent, at 12,741.21, after reaching 12,730.67, its lowest level since September 4. Eight of the 10 main sectors on the index were in the red. The materials sector, which includes mining stocks, declined 2.8 percent. Gold producers lost almost 4 percent. Goldcorp Inc fell 5.2 percent to C$27.12, and Barrick Gold Corp slipped 4.4 percent to C$18.35. The two stocks had the biggest negative influence on the market. Silver Wheaton Corp declined 3.9 percent to C$25.15.

Gabrielle Regains Strength, Takes Aim at Canada

Gabrielle will affect part of Atlantic Canada with drenching rain and gusty wind before the week comes to a close. The system was downgraded to a tropical depression late Wednesday evening, EDT, after bringing a couple of days of windswept rain, rough surf and seas to Bermuda Tuesday and Wednesday. However, Gabrielle has become a tropical storm for the third in its life Thursday midday. Gabrielle is expected to track northward over the next several days. A cool front pushing across the Eastern U.S. will keep the tropical system far enough east to have no impacts on the United States. The storm will directly impact part of Atlantic Canada. The main threat from Gabrielle will be heavy rain. According to AccuWeather.com Canada Weather Specialist Brett Anderson, “The heaviest rainfall, likely 25-50 mm, will run along and just west of the track up through eastern Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and western Newfoundland.” RELATED: Canada Weather Blog In addition to the heavy rainfall, Gabrielle will also bring winds of tropical storm force to the region that could bring down trees and lead to power outages. “At this point, it looks like tropical storm-force winds could impact Cape Breton then the south coast of Newfoundland late Friday and Friday night.” Anderson said early Wednesday. By Saturday, interactions with land and the sweeping energy of the cold front will likely cause Gabrielle to lose tropical characteristics. However, the system may still bring some more rainfall to part of Labrador before it travels over the cold waters of the northern Atlantic Ocean.

Canada’s Daniel Nestor says win or lose, Davis Cup semi will be a highlight of his long career

TOPSHOTS A South Korean man eats a live octopus during an event to promote a local food festival in Seoul on September 12, 2013. AFP PHOTO / JUNG YEON-JEJUNG YEON-JE/AFP/Getty Images

government has stated its intent to finish selling off its stake in General Motors General Motors by early 2014, and now its Canadian counterpart seems to be taking a similar path. After Tuesdays closing bell, the investment arm of Canadas government sold 30 million shares of GM to BofA Merrill Lynch and RBC Capital Markets , who will quickly turn around and sell the stake to investors. The trade leaves the Canada GEN Investment Corporation with slightly more than 110 million GM shares and 16.1 million shares of preferred stock it received in return for contributing to the automakers 2009 bailout. As we said from the start, our investment in GM was always meant to be temporary as we worked to maximize the return to Canadian taxpayers, Canadian Finance Minister Jim Flaherty said. The Government of Canada is committed to exiting from ownership of GM as quickly as feasibleas we demonstrated today. The sale would be worth $1.1 billion at Tuesdays closing price of $37.00, but Canada probably took a modest haircut in order to sell the 30 million shares in a single block to banks. With its remaining stake the Canadian government remains the automakers third-largest shareholder, behind the 189 million shares still controlled by the U.S. Treasury Department and the 140 million shares held by a United Auto Workers trust for retiree medical benefits, according to FactSet. Those figures reflect a 30-million-share sale by Treasury in June, but not additional sales in July and August that were reported to Congress. While the number of shares in those sales has not yet been disclosed, Treasury said it sold $811 million worth of GM stock last month and $837 million worth in July. The U.S. government has a stated goal to be out of GM entirely sometime in early 2014, and earlier this year charged JPMorgan Chase JPMorgan Chase and Citigroup Citigroup with helping unload the remaining shares. Government sales in general, by Canada and the U.S., certainly become easier with a stock thats moving higher and GM retook its $33 IPO price this year and has risen as high as $37.71.

The two recorded a 6-3, 6-4, 3-6, 3-6, 15-13 win in Canadas Davis Cup quarterfinal victory over Italy last spring, a thriller that lasted 4 hours and set the stage for Raonics singles win that ensured Canadas advance. Pospisil considers himself lucky to play alongside the veteran who secured the world No. 1 mens double ranking for more than 100 weeks. (Nestor) is a legend and someone I looked up to for many years growing up, Pospisil said. So obviously playing with him the first few time was nerve wracking. I feel much more comfortable now a year or two later and Im really able to appreciate it. Nestor hopes to play through 2014, and turn around what hasnt been the greatest 2013. He said his body, remarkably, feels a lot better than it did back in the early days during his injury-plagued singles career. He travels with his own trainer now and draws inspiration from older athletes such as Niklas Lidstrom, the former Detroit Red Wings defenseman and seven-time Norris Trophy winner who retired at 42. There are a lot of athletes who have endured, Nestor said. I think a lot of it is that people retire because theyre fed up or sick of it. Yes, it is very tough not being with my family all the time. But from what Ive heard from people whove retired, they all say This is the best it is. Thats why he tries to live in the moment. Definitely the life and the camaraderie with the other players is something I appreciate a lot more now. I was very shy when I was younger, and didnt always enjoy the lifestyle, Nestor said. For sure I do appreciate it more.