TSX Remains Positive

Health-care Triumphs

Stocks in Toronto barely held onto their gains, as health-care strength overcame losses in the energy sector.

The S&P/TSX Composite Index stayed positive 22.7 points to close Monday at 16,510.82.

The Canadian dollar gained 0.10 cents to 76.62 cents U.S.

Among health-care concerns, CannTrust Holdings came out of the funk they were in for much of last week, trumpeting gains of 65 cents, or 19.5%, to $3.99, while Hexo Corp. gained 24 cents, or 3.8%, to $6.57.

In the tech sector, Exfo Inc. vaulted 21 cents, or 4.5%, to $4.92, while Shopify climbed $18.44, or 4.6%, to $422.50.

In consumer discretionary stocks, MTY Group jumped $3.47, or 5.5%, to $66.62, while Gildan Activewear gathered 56 cents, or 1.1%, to $52.09.

Energy stocks, however, went south by the closing bell, as Precision Drilling lost 13 cents, or 5.5%, to $2.25, while Crescent Point Energy doffed 23 cents, or 5.3%, to $4.14.

Real-estate concerns also suffered, as RioCan REIT dropped 21 cents to $26.19, while Summit Industrials REIT lost nine cents to $13.06.

Consumer staples were also on the downside, as Alimentation Couche-Tard fell $1.02, or 1.2%, to $82.75, Premium Brands Holdings slid 13 cents to $93.91.

On the economic front, home sales recorded via Canadian MLS® Systems were little changed in June 2019 following a string of monthly gains recorded in March, April and May.

The Canadian Real Estate Association also says that, although running close to its 10-year average and up nearly 10% from the six-year low reached in February 2019, activity remains well below levels recorded over much of 2015, 2016 and 2017.

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange moved up 3.01 points to finish Monday at 579.04

Eight of the 12 Toronto subgroups were positive on the day, as health-care sprinted 2%, information technology picked up 1.9%, and consumer discretionary stocks gained 0.4%.

The four laggards were weighed most by energy, down 0.4%, while consumer staples and real-estate each lost 0.2%.

ON WALLSTREET

Stocks rose to notch a fresh record close on Monday, but the gains were muted as Wall Street remained cautious to start off the corporate earnings season.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average improved 27.13 points from their all-time high to 27,359.16,

The S&P 500 regained 0.53 points from Friday’s all-time high to 3,014.30

The NASDAQ Composite gained 14.04 points to 8,258.18

Citigroup kicked off the earnings season by reporting second-quarter numbers which topped analyst expectations. Gains from the initial public offering of Tradeweb, an electronic bond trading platform, drove the bank’s results past Wall Street estimates.

Citigroup shares traded higher in the pre-market after the results were released, but quickly fell 0.1% lower shortly after the open.

Other big banks like J.P. Morgan Chase, Morgan Stanley, Bank of America and Goldman Sachs are expected to report quarterly earnings later this week.

The outlook for this earnings season is bleak. Analysts expect S&P 500 earnings to have fallen by 3% in the second quarter.

Symantec shares plunged more than 10% after media reports the company ceased deal negotiations with Broadcom.

Monday’s moves come after the major indexes had a record-setting week as Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell indicated during congressional testimony that an interest-rate cut could be on the horizon from the central bank. The Dow closed above 27,000 for the first time on Thursday and Friday’s gain brought its increase on the week to 1.5%.

Meanwhile, China’s economic growth slowed to 6.2% in the second-quarter from a year earlier, its weakest pace in at least 27 years, as the trade war with the U.S. took its toll.

Still, China’s gross domestic product growth was in line with expectations, and data for industrial production, retail sales, and fixed-asset investment came in above analyst expectations.

President Donald Trump commented on the Chinese economic data, tweeting that the slowdown in economic growth is "why China wants to make a deal."

Prices for the benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury eked up, lowering yields to 2.09% from Friday’s 2.11%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices were down 92 cents at $59.29 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices added $4.50 to $1,416.70 U.S. an ounce.