Stocks Scream Higher at Outset

MTY, Fortis in Focus

Equities in Canada’s largest centre made much headway as Thursday began, on Thursday, riding on an improving global mood that was lifted by hopes that Washington could resolve its debt-ceiling standoff, and technology stocks tracked gains in the NASDAQ.

The TSX Composite spiked 151.87 points to begin Thursday at 20,343.53.

The Canadian dollar edged up 0.08 cents to 79.53 cents U.S.

JP Morgan cut the target price on Fortis to $59 from $60. Fortis shares gained 30 cents to $56.68.

Scotiabank cut the target price on Linamar to $95 from $100. Shares in Linamar gathered 70 cents, or 1.1%, to $66.21.

RBC raises target price on MTY Food Group to $62.00 from $52.00. MTY shares captured $2.45, or 3.7%, to $69.00.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Wednesday Canada will place unvaccinated federal employees on unpaid leave and require COVID-19 shots for air, train and ship passengers. Trudeau was unveiling one of the world's strictest vaccine mandate policies.

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange reversed course and gained 5.86 points to 868.58

All but one of the 12 TSX subgroups were higher, led by consumer discretionary stocks, up 2%, while information technology, ahead 1.7%, and materials, better by 1%.

Only health-care missed out on the party, falling 0.4%.

ON WALLSTREET

Stocks jumped on Thursday as Congress appeared to near a deal that would raise the debt limit in the short term and avoid a disastrous government default.

The Dow Jones Industrials exploded out of the blocks, gaining 478.33 points, or 1.4%, to 34,895.32, helped by gains in Visa, Nike and Home Depot.

The S&P 500 jumped 56.36 points to 4,419.91

The NASDAQ Composite hiked 199.25 points, or 1.4%, to 14,701.16.

Thursday’s gains put the major averages in the green for the week.

Stocks rose broadly on Thursday with technology shares and reopening plays trading higher. Twitter rose 2.6%, Nvidia popped 1.7% and AMD rose 1.6%. Facebook gained after JPMorgan said it was time to buy the recent dip on the stock.

Meanwhile, General Motors rose 1%. Costco shares added 2% after reporting better-than-expected September sales.

Washington’s race to reach an agreement on the debt ceiling has been an overhang for the market this week as investors hoped to avoid a government default.

Stocks reversed their downward course on Wednesday when Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell offered a short-term suspension proposal to Senate Democrats. They were likely to accept the deal that would raise the debt ceiling by a specific amount and allow the government to keep operating until some point in December.

Also helping sentiment on Thursday, weekly jobless claims fell sharply last week as the enhanced unemployment benefits ended, the Labor Department reported Thursday. Initial filings for unemployment benefits totaled 326,000 for the week ended Oct. 2, below the 345,000 Dow Jones estimate and a drop from the previous week’s 364,000.

Prices for 10-year Treasurys gained ground, lowering yields to 1.55% from Wednesday’s 1.53%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices lost 67 cents to $76.76 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices slumped $5.80 to $1,756.00 U.S. an ounce.