Gold Leads TSX Stocks Higher

Materials, Tech Outperform, Too

Stocks in Canada’s largest centre finished Friday with healthy gains, led by solid performances in the resource and tech fields.

The S&P/TSX Composite Index gained 79.66 points to end the session at 15,586.13

The Canadian dollar sank 0.05 cents at 73.26 cents U.S.

In the gold sector, Eldorado Gold barreled ahead 41 cents, or 9%, to $4.99, while Detour Gold scored a gain of $2.05, or 13.5%, to $17.25.

Among materials stocks, First Quantum Minerals climbed 19 cents, or 1.5%, to $13.01, while Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan gained four cents to $23.21.

Among tech issues, BlackBerry added eight cents to $12.75, while Constellation Software popped $11.36, or 1.9%, to $624.33.

Energy stocks were in the green, most notably, EnCana Corp., moving higher 13 cents to $14.61, while Suncor triumphed $1.03, or 2.5%, to $42.78.

On the data front, Statistics Canada reported that gross domestic product was unchanged in February following three months of growth.
Gains in service-producing industries were offset by declines in goods-producing industries.

While that will mark a step down from January's strong 0.6% pace, analysts still expect the economy is on track for a solid first quarter.

The agency’s industrial product price index rose 0.8% in March, mainly due to higher prices for motorized and recreational vehicles and primary non-ferrous metal products.

The raw materials price index fell 1.6% during the same month, primarily due to lower prices for crude energy products.

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange regained 6.36 points to 806.77

All but two of the 12 TSX subgroups were positive on the day, as gold shone 2.7% brighter, materials strengthened 1.9%, and information technology moved up 1.3%

The two laggards were real-estate, down 0.2%, while industrials bowed 0.01%.

ON WALLSTREET

U.S. equities closed lower on Friday as investors digested economic data and key corporate earnings, but looked to close April with strong monthly gains.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average slid 40.96 points to close the day, week and month at 20.940.37, with Intel and Goldman Sachs contributing the most losses.

The S&P 500 faded 4.6 points to 2,384.17, with financials and telecommunications leading decliners.

The NASDAQ Composite lost 1.33 points to 6,047.61, backing off from Thursday’s all-time highs

That said, the three major indexes posted a monthly advance of about 1%

About 190 S&P components reported this week. Among the highest-profile stocks:

General Motors reported earnings per share of $1.70 on sales of $41.2 billion U.S., versus expectations of $1.46 per share and $40.75 billion U.S.

Shares in the car maker eked up seven cents to $34.61.

Amazon revealed EPS of $1.48 on sales of $35.7 billion, versus expectations of $1.12 earnings per share on sales of $35.3 billion U.S.
Shares in Amazon gained $7.08 to $925.46.

Alphabet reported EPS of $7.73 on revenue of $24.75 billion, versus estimates of $7.39 earnings per share on sales of $24.22 billion U.S.

Shares in Google’s parent galloped $36.00, or 4%, to end the week and month at $927.45.

The U.S economy grew at a rate of 0.7% in the first quarter, the Commerce Department said. Economists expected growth of 1.2%. But one survey tracked economic growth at 0.8% and another tracked GDP at a 0.2% growth rate.

Other economic data released Friday included the Chicago Purchasing Managers Index, which unexpectedly rose, and April consumer sentiment, which inched higher.

Prices for the benchmark 10-year Treasury note were higher, lowering yields to 2.28% from Thursday’s 2.3%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices gained 14 cents at $49.11 U.S. a barrel

Gold prices gained $3.20 at $1,269.10 U.S. an ounce.