TSX flat at noon

First Quantum, Barrick in focus

Canada's main stock index barely budged Monday off its closing perch from Friday, as rising metal prices led to gains in material stocks, with hopes of resolution in the U.S.-China trade dispute boosting the sentiment.

The S&P/TSX Composite Index inched up 2.09 points to greet noon at 16,325.80

The Canadian dollar strengthened 0.53 cents to 76.53 cents

First Quantum Minerals' gain of 11 cents to $17.29, and Barrick Gold's six-cent rise to $13.16, were the biggest boost to the index.

Shares of Enbridge climbed 23 cents to $47.27, and Canadian Natural Resources pickup of 11 cents to $44.75.

The largest percentage gainers on the TSX were Aurora Cannabis, which jumped 60 cents, or 9.2%, to $7.10, and New Gold, which rose 2.5 cents, or 1.9%, to $1.35 after Cannccord Genuity raised rating to "hold" from "sell".

Canopy Growth sprinted $3.47, or 7.9%, to $47.65.

Kinross Gold fell 10 cents, or 2.6%, to $3.70, the most on the TSX, after RBC cut rating to "sector perform" from "outperform". Boardwalk REIT was up 18 cents to $51.75.

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange gained 5.39 points to 683.40

Seven of the 12 subgroups were lower, with information technology handing back 0.9%, consumer staples sliding 0.8%, and gold dulling in price 0.3%.

The five gainers were led by health-care, thundering 4.8% higher, while energy edged up 0.3%, and real-estate eked forward 0.2%.

ON WALLSTREET

Stocks rose on Monday as investors cheered corporate deal-making activity, with the major indexes approaching record levels.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average remained positive 98.02 points to 25,767.34, with Nike outperforming.

The S&P 500 picked up 5.21 points to 2,855.34, led by gains in energy.

The NASDAQ doffed 9.06 points to 7,807.27, pressured by declines in Facebook and Tesla.

Stocks kicked off this week within striking distance of reaching all-time highs. The S&P 500 was just 0.8% below a record set on Jan. 26, while the Dow was 3.6% and the NASDAQ 1.5%, below their all-time highs.

This week could also be record-setting for Wall Street for another reason. On Wednesday, the bull market turns 3,453 days old. Barring a 20% decline between now and then, some strategists believe it would mark the longest bull market in history.

Many strategists believe the current bull market started on March 9, 2009. Since then, the S&P 500 has surged more than 300%.
PepsiCo agreed to buy SodaStream for $3.2 billion, or $144 per share. The agreed price per share represents a 10.9% premium from SodaStream's closing price of $129.85 on Friday. The deal is expected to close by January. SodaStream shares rose about 10%.

Meanwhile, Tyson Foods confirmed it was buy Keystone Foods, a chicken-processing company, for $2.16 billion in cash.

Nike shares rose more than 3% after Piper Jaffray upgraded the athletic apparel maker to overweight from neutral and raised their price target to $93 a share from $72. The stock traded around $82 per share.

Facebook's stock slipped 1% on media reports the U.S. government is trying to force the company to break its encryption on the Messages app.

Tesla dropped 1.3% after analysts at J.P. Morgan slashed their price target on the stock to $195 from $308, noting they believe the funding behind CEO Elon Musk's plan to go private was "not secured."

Prices for the benchmark for the 10-year U.S. Treasury gained sharply, lowering yields to 2.83% from Friday’s 2.87%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices added 19 cents at $66.10U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices gathered $8.60 to $1,192.80 U.S. an ounce.