Stocks Vault on Better Retail Sales

Nuvei in Focus

Equities rose in Canada’s biggest centre on Friday as data showing a rise in retail sales and an uptick in house prices helped offset fears of prolonged economic recovery as coronavirus cases rise globally.

The TSX opened Friday’s session up 16.38 points, to 16,263.10.

The Canadian dollar fell 0.27 cents to 75.77 cents U.S.

Ontario will clamp down on social gatherings to prevent "reckless careless people" from spreading the coronavirus at illegal parties, Premier Doug Ford said on Thursday.

Carolyn Wilkins, the senior deputy governor at the Bank of Canada who lost her bid for the top job just four months ago, will not seek a second term, the bank said on Thursday.

Shares of Nuvei Corp jumped more than 30% in their market debut on Thursday after the Canadian payment processing firm raised $700 million in the largest ever technology company offering on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

In the economic docket, Statistics Canada reported that July’s wholesale trade increased for a third consecutive month in July as sales rose 4.3% to a record high $65.0 billion on the strength of higher sales in the motor vehicle and motor vehicle parts and accessories sub-sector.

Retail sales rose 0.6% to $52.9 billion in July, led by higher sales at motor vehicle and parts dealers and gas stations.

The agency goes on to say retail sales in June and July topped those of February, just prior to the pandemic.

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange inched ahead 0.85 points to 744.07.

Seven of the 12 TSX subgroups were negative, with energy down 1.1%, and health-care and real-estate each settling 0.4%.

The five gainers were led by information technology, jumping 1.3%, while industrials progressed 0.4%, and materials, up 0.2%.

ON WALLSTREET

Stocks were little changed on Friday as Wall Street tried to recover from another sharp selloff in major technology names. The market was also on pace for its first weekly gain of the month.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 53.3 points to 27,848.68.

The S&P 500 dipped 2.43 points to 3,354.58.

The NASDAQ regained 18.65 points to 10,928.93.

Shares of Facebook rose 1.4%. Amazon, Netflix and Alphabet were all higher as well. Oracle, meanwhile, slipped 0.3% after the U.S. government said it will block all TikTok and WeChat downloads in the country on Sunday. Oracle is trying to finalize a partnership deal with TikTok-parent ByteDance.

Big Tech struggled in the previous session, dragging down the broader market and adding to its steep September drop. Amazon, Microsoft, Facebook and Apple have all lost at least 10% month to date.

Investors also remained on edge about the outlook on further coronavirus stimulus as well as the timing of a viable vaccine.

Republicans and Democrats are still struggling to agree on how much aid to continue to provide in a follow-up bill to the previous $2-trillion package. President Donald Trump said Wednesday he liked “the larger numbers,” urging GOP lawmakers to go for a bigger coronavirus stimulus, but his comments left Republicans skeptical.

Meanwhile, the path to a Covid-19 vaccine, which is critical to the economic recovery, still seems unclear. Health officials said vaccinations would be in limited quantities this year and not widely distributed for six to nine months.

Still, the major averages were set to snap two-week losing streaks despite the uncertainties surrounding the market and economic outlook.

Both the S&P 500 and NASDAQ were up about 0.5% week to date heading into Friday’s session. The Dow was up 0.85% for the week.

Prices for the 10-Year Treasury gained slightly lowering yields to 0.68% from Thursday’s 0.69%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices added 25 cents to $41.22 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices were shot up $8.40 to $1,958.30 U.S. an ounce.