Markets Regain Strength

Energy, Discretionaries Lead Way

Equities in Toronto finished Tuesday with solid gains, most notably in energy and consumer stocks.

The S&P/TSX Composite Index raced ahead 92.12 points to greet Tuesday’s closing bell at 16,628.50

The Canadian dollar docked 0.48 cents at 74.45 cents U.S.

Energy stocks triumphed, with Suncor gaining 58 cents, or 1.3%, to $45.93, and Canadian Natural Resources took on 68 cents, or 1.6%, to $42.17.

Magna International was among a host of consumer discretionary stocks in the green, gaining 67 cents to $75.66, while Canadian Tire sprinted $1.18 to $150.32.

Industrial stocks also flexed muscle, as Canadian National Railway popped $1.43, or 1.1%, to $126.68, while Bombardier added 11 cents, or 4%, to $2.84.

Gold dulled somewhat Tuesday, with Barrick Gold subsiding eight cents to $17.21, while Goldcorp unchanged at $14.20.

Among communications stocks, Rogers dipped 50 cents to $65.81, and Shaw Communications let go of a dime to $26.87.

Health-care stocks also saw some profit-taking, especially among issues like Canopy Growth, shedding 81 cents, or 1.3%, to $63.56, and Aurora Cannabis, which gave up 15 cents, or 1.2%, to $12.17.

On the economic ledger, Statistics Canada reported that wholesale trade in this country increased 0.3% to $63.7 billion in February, the third consecutive monthly gain.

Higher sales were recorded in two of seven sub-sectors, led by the motor vehicle and motor vehicle parts and accessories sub-sector. Excluding this sub-sector, wholesale sales declined 1.5%.

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange dropped 2.07 points to 608.48

Eight of the 12 Toronto subgroups gained on the day, with energy chugging along 1.4%, consumer discretionary stocks better 1.2%, energy up 1.1%, and industrials growing 0.8%.

The four losing subgroups were weighed most by gold, sliding 0.3%, communications down 0.2%, and health-care, down 0.1%.

ON WALLSTREET

The S&P 500 and NASDAQ Composite rallied on Tuesday to notch record closing highs as Wall Street cheered stronger-than-expected quarterly profits from some of the largest publicly traded U.S. companies.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average hiked 145.34 points to 26,656.39, and was 1.1% from an all-time high.

The S&P 500 gained 25.71 points to 2,933.68, above an all-time closing high of 2,930.75 set in Sept. 20. It was still below its intraday record of 2,940.91.

The NASDAQ Composite popped 105.56 points, or 1.3%, to 8,120.82

Dow members Coca-Cola gained 1.7%, and United Technologies added 2.3%, both having reported better-than-expected quarterly earnings on Tuesday.

Twitter shares jumped 15.6% on its stronger-than-expected results. The social media company said its monthly active users totaled 330 million, more than an expert estimate of 318 million.

Lockheed Martin also rallied more than 5% after its earnings easily topped expectations. The company reported strong operating margins across all its major businesses, which include aeronautics and missiles.

Procter & Gamble also posted stronger-than-forecast earnings, but its stock traded down 2.7%. Texas Instruments, eBay and Stryker were set to release their latest quarterly results after market close.

This is the busiest week of the corporate earnings season. Once the dust settles, more than 140 S&P 500 companies will have released their calendar first-quarter results.

So far, the results have largely topped expectations. More than 78% of the S&P 500 companies that have reported have surpassed analyst expectations

On the data front, new home sales data was scheduled for release this morning.

Prices for the benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury were higher, weighing yields to 2.57% from Monday’s 2.59%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices gained 79 cents to $66.34 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices fell $3.30 to $1,274.30 U.S. an ounce.