TSX at 6-Wk. Peak

Maple Leaf Foods, Manulife in Focus

Equities in Canada’s largest centre opened at six-week highs on Thursday, led by energy shares, as investor sentiment was boosted by signals that a “phase one” U.S.-China trade deal was close to being finalized.

The TSX Composite Index stayed on fire, increasing 79.54 points to begin Thursday’s trading at 16,825.15

The Canadian dollar inched 0.11 cents to 75.94 cents U.S.

Canadian Tire reported quarterly revenue below Wall Street estimates, hurt by rising competition from Walmart and Amazon. Canadian Tire vaulted $4.81, or 3.3%, to $148.97.

Canadian Natural Resources posted a quarterly profit above analysts’ estimates, as the country’s largest oil producer benefited from higher production. Natural Resources shares heightened $1.51, or 4.4%, to $35.65.

Maple Leaf Foods has turned carbon neutral, the Canadian meat producer said, amid rising demand worldwide from investors and public that companies act to reduce climate risks. Maple Leaf Foods shares gained 13 cents to $23.30.

Manulife and Sun Life beat analysts’ quarterly profit estimates on Wednesday, driven by strong demand in Asia, especially Hong Kong.
Manulife shares jumped 78 cents, or 3.1%, to $26.25, while Sun shares rocketed 75 cents, or 1.2%, to $61.41.

Canaccord Genuity raised the target price on iA Financial to $73.00 from $66.00. IAG shares picked up 37 cents to $68.17.

Desjardins raised the target price on Intact Financial to $138.00 from $132.00. Intact shares dropped 23 cents to $138.03.

CIBC cut the target price on Pason Systems to $20.00 from $22.00. Pason shares settled 15 cents, or 1%, to $14.29.

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange slipped 0.58 points at 538.05

Seven of the 12 Toronto subgroups were positive, headed by energy, busting out 2.9%, communications, soaring 1%, and health-care, better by 0.7%.

The five laggards were led by gold, hesitating 1.7%, materials, sliding 0.5%. and real-estate, falling 0.2%.

ON WALLSTREET

Stocks rallied to record highs on Thursday after China said the world’s two largest economies had agreed to remove existing trade tariffs, lifting expectations around a possible resolution to the ongoing U.S.-China trade war.

The Dow Jones Industrials got some hitch in their "giddyup", gaining 206.13 points to 27,698.69, as trade bellwethers Caterpillar and Boeing were both up at least 1.2%.

The S&P 500 added 17.27 points to 3,094.05, as the financials sector gained 0.8%. Energy stocks also advanced 1.1%.
The NASDAQ tacked on 60.76 points, to 8,471.38,

Chip stocks such as Micron Technology, Advanced Micro Devices and Skyworks Solutions all gained more than 1%. Apple shares advanced 0.9%.

In corporate news, Booking Holdings, Disney and Activision Holdings are the companies set to report their latest quarterly figures after market close.

Qualcomm shares jumped more than 7% after reporting Wednesday quarterly results that topped analyst expectations. The company’s results were driven by strength in Qualcomm’s licensing business.

In corporate news, Booking Holdings, Disney and Activision Holdings are the companies set to report their latest quarterly figures after market close.

Qualcomm shares jumped more than 7% after reporting Wednesday quarterly results that topped analyst expectations. The company’s results were driven by strength in Qualcomm’s licensing business.

Gao Feng, a ministry spokesperson for China’s Commerce Ministry, said that both sides had agreed to simultaneously cancel some existing tariffs on one another’s goods, according to the country’s state broadcaster. The ministry spokesperson said that both sides were closer to a so-called "phase-one" trade agreement following constructive negotiations over the past two weeks.

Prices for the benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury slumbered, raising yields to 1.90% from Wednesday’s 1.82%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices gained 62 cents to $56.97 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices chopped $9.10 to $1,484 U.S. an ounce.