Healthy Gains for TSX

Canada's main stock index reached for the stars, on Monday after U.S. President Donald Trump appeared to suggest that Canada and Mexico could win exemptions to his planned sweeping tariffs on aluminum and steel imports if the two countries sign a new North American Free Trade Agreement deal.

The S&P/TSX Composite Index moved higher 156.69 points, or 1%, to close Monday at 15,541.28

The Canadian dollar lost 0.58 cents to 77.01 cents U.S.

Prometic Life Sciences, up nine cents, or 6.5%, to $1.47, was among the biggest gainers after winning rare pediatric disease and orphan drug designations from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for its Inter-Alpha-Inhibitor-Proteins for the treatment of Necrotizing Enterocolitis.

Canopy Growth, one of the most active stocks by volume on the TSX, leaped $3.51, or 11.1%, to $32.50.
Another positive stock leading the index was Crew Energy, rising 25 cents, or 16%, to $1.83, after reporting increases in its fourth-quarter adjusted funds flow and production.

Baytex Energy -- zooming 33 cents, or 10.2%, to $3.56 --, and Advantage Oil & Gas -- chugging ahead 15 cents, or 4.2%, to $3.74 -- were also among the biggest gainers,

In the materials sector, First Quantum Minerals grew 35 cents, or 1.7% .to $20.72, while Agnico Eagle Mines gained 59 cents, or 1.2%, to $49.74.

The lone losing group was consumer staples, in which Saputo sagged seven cents to $40.08, while Metro gave back a penny to $41.01.


The TSX Venture Exchange gained 13.17 points, or 1.6%, to 839.19

All but one of the 12 TSX subgroups were higher, with health-care triumphing 5.8%, while energy took on 2.4%, and materials gained 1.6%.

Only consumer staples moved backwards, and only 0.1% at that.


Stocks rose on Monday, erasing earlier losses, as worries about a potential trade war waned.

The Dow Jones Industrials went skyward 336.7 points, or 1.4%, to conclude Monday at 24,874.76. Caterpillar was the biggest contributor of gains to the Dow, rising 3.2%.

The S&P 500 regained 29.69 points, or 1.1%, to 2,720.94, after briefly trading lower, with utilities as the best-performing sector. Harley-Davidson, a closely watched stock amid the tariff news, rose 2.4%

The NASDAQ Composite gained 72.84 points, or 1% to 7,330.71

Famous Dave's of America Inc. was among a slew of companies reporting earnings Monday.

In corporate news, French insurer AXA is buying XL Group for $15.3 billion U.S., or $57.60 a share, in a deal that would create a property and casualty insurance giant. XL shares rose more than 30% on the back of the news.

In economic news, the U.S. services Purchasing Managers Index showed business activity expansion accelerated to a six-month high in February.

President Donald Trump announced last week the U.S. will implement a 25% tariff on steel imports and a 10% tariff on aluminum imports.

The news sparked fears of a potential global trade war as world leaders condemned the announcement. In response to the U.S. tariffs, the European Union proposed tariffs on Harley-Davidson bikes and other U.S. products.

Prices for the benchmark 10-year Treasury note backed off, raising yields to 2.88% from Friday’s 2.87%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices took on $1.35 a barrel to $62.60 U.S.

Gold prices slumped $3.20 at $1,320.20 U.S. an ounce.

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