|TSX ends week on up note|
The Toronto stock market held onto slight gains Friday as job creation data in the U.S. came in well above expectations.
The S&P/TSX composite index advanced 27.16 points to conclude Friday at 14,299.08
The Canadian dollar got bruised 0.84 cents at 90.19 cents U.S.
The energy component climbed while Penn West Petroleum Ltd. had a quarterly net loss of $728 million or $1.49 a share compared with a year-earlier net loss of $78 million or 16 cents per share.
The most recent loss was mostly due to non-cash asset impairment charges related to the company's disposal of natural gas assets. Penn West shares advanced 72 cents, or 8.3%, to $9.42.
The metals and mining sector declined, as May copper tumbled 12 cents to $3.09 U.S. a pound.
Teck Resources faltered 85 cents to $24.41
The gold sector fell as Barrick Gold lost 25 cents to $22.07
Elsewhere, WestJet is cutting its revenue expectations for the first quarter due to softer domestic demand and a larger than expected impact from the Easter and Passover holidays.
The airline expects revenue per available seat mile for the first quarter to be flat to down slightly year over year, compared with earlier expectations of it to be flat or up slightly. Westjet gained 21 cents to $25.71.
Tech shares led the list of gainers, even as BlackBerry shares gave back three cents to $10.98.
On the economic slate, Statistics Canada reported that the economy shed about 7,000 jobs in February, thus keeping the unemployment rate at 7%. There has been little overall employment growth in Canada since August 2013. However, compared with 12 months earlier, employment increased by 95,000, or 0.5%.
The agency also said that our merchandise imports declined 1.6% while exports edged up 0.2% in January. Thus, Canada's trade deficit with the world narrowed from $922 million in December to $177 million in January.
The TSX Venture Exchange moved up 3.65 points end Friday to 1,043.01
All but four of the 14 Toronto subgroups ended the day positive with information technology leading the pack, up 1.7%, health-care stocks climbing 1.4%, and energy better by 0.9%
Metals and mining weighed most on the four laggards, down 3.5%, global base metals, off 1.9%, and materials, fading 1.5%.
Stocks were lower Friday, as the enthusiasm following a better-than-expected jobs report wore off.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average remained positive 30.83 points – off its highs of the day -- to wrap up business for the week at 16,452.72
The S&P 500 index eked up 1.01 points to 1,878.04. The NASDAQ dipped 15.91 points to 4,336.22.
With the conflict fears eased in Ukraine, stocks have recovered and were on track to end the week with modest gains. The Dow was on pace for a 0.6% gain, while the S&P 500 has increased 0.7%. The NASDAQ's gain for the week is slim, at 0.3%.
Big declines in biotech stocks weighed on the NASDAQ Friday. Biogen Idec and Vertex Pharmaceuticals were down more than 3% each, and Gilead Sciences was also down sharply.
Foot Locker rose after the athletic apparel retailer reported stronger-than-expected results, including a 5.3% jump in same-store sales. Shares of Nike gained ground as well.
Big Lots surged after the closeout retail chain posted slightly better quarterly revenue.
Shares of Coupons.com almost doubled on their first day of trading Friday. The online coupon company sold shares at $16 U.S. apiece in its initial public offering late Thursday, above the expected range.
Investors were encouraged after the government's report showed that the U.S. economy added 175,000 jobs last month, an improvement from January and ahead of economists' expectations.
Meanwhile, the unemployment rate ticked up to 6.7%, from 6.6% the prior month as more Americans joined the labour force.
The improvement also provides the Federal Reserve, which has begun scaling back, or tapering, its bond buying program by $10 billion U.S. a month, with more reasons to continue down its planned path, experts say
Prices for 10-year U.S. Treasuries sank, raising yields to 2.79% from Thursday’s 2.74%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.
Oil prices took on 97 cents to $102.53 U.S. a barrel.
Gold prices slipped $11.40 to $1,340.40 U.S. an ounce.