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AFTER THE BELL: Markets retreat as energy sectors fall, oil prices continue to dip

After triple digit losses on Monday, the TSX once again dipped below the flat line, pulled by the struggling energy sector.

The exchange lost 24 points with six of 11 sectors trading lower.

Helping to lift investor sentiment earlier in the day was renewed optimism of a potential trade deal between the U.S. and China.

The South China Morning Post reported that China’s top economic negotiator is expected to visit the U.S., ahead of talks between the world’s top economic superpowers.

However, 14 of the TSX’s 15 most actively traded companies fell deep in the red, including industrial giant Bombardier which dropped 10 percent, along with popular marijuana producers Aurora Cannabis and Aphria.

The biggest drag on the index was the energy sector, which lost 2.8 percent as oil’s losing skid continues.

Oil plunged $4.70 to $55.23 US a barrel, marking its lowest level in 11 months.

Oil is declining sharply as a surplus of global stockpiles chokes demand, despite the world’s leading producer Saudi Arabia vowing it will reduce supply to stem the bleeding.

In New York, the Dow’s decline continued after the index plunged 602 points on Monday.

The exchange was off by 100 points, led lower by the energy and consumer sectors with industrial giant Boeing and corporate heavyweights Home Depot, Walmart, and McDonald’s dipping into negative territory.

The Nasdaq also pulled back from earlier gains, but still managed to end the day flat as the battered tech sector regained its footing somewhat after a brutal start to the week.

But Apple lagged again, down one percent as the tech giant stumbles on fears of an iPhone slowdown and lower revenue.

Gold lost 40 cents to $1,203 an ounce while the loonie edged up 5/100ths of a cent higher to $0.7553 US.

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