TSX Gains in First Hour

Richelieu in Focus

Canada's main stock index gained on Friday as energy stocks jumped on higher oil prices, while a surge in employment numbers to pre-pandemic levels signaled a strong economic recovery.

The TSX Composite picked up 37.7 points to open Friday to 20,453.91

The Canadian dollar advanced 0.21 cents to 79.91 cents U.S.

U.S.-listed pot company Sundial Growers will buy Canadian alcohol retailer Alcanna for about $346 million.

As for Alcanna, CIBC raised the target price to $8.75 from $7.50. Its shares began the day’s trading up 63 cents, or 7.8%, to $8.72.

National Bank of Canada upped the price target on Neighbourly Pharmacy to $33.50 from $32.00. Neighbourly stock fell $1.82, or 5.5%, to $31.19.

National Bank of Canada raised the price target on Richelieu Hardware to $48 from $44.50. Richelieu shares took on 50 cents, or 1.1%, to $44.74.

On the economic ledger, Statistics Canada says the economy created 157,000 jobs in September, the fourth consecutive monthly increase. The

Western University’s IVEY School of Business reported its Purchasing Managers Index registered at 70.4 for September, up from 66 in August and 54.3 in September 2020.

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 gathered 6.55 points to 881.05

All but three of the 12 TSX subgroups were lower, as health-care docked 0.7%, utilities fell 0.5%, and information technology subsided 0.4%.

The three gainers proved to be energy, steaming ahead 2%, while gold shone 1.9% brighter and materials were better by 1.4%.

ON WALLSTREET

Stocks pointed downward on Friday, even with the S&P 500 headed for a winning week as optimism about a short-term debt ceiling deal trumped a disappointing jobs report.

The Dow Jones Industrials slid 69.91 points, or 1%, to 34,685.03,

The S&P 500 dipped 1.84 points to 4,397.92

The NASDAQ Composite doffed 6.08 points to 14,647.93.

Still, the major averages are all solidly in the green for the week, with the Dow and S&P 500 up more than 1% since Monday.

There was something for both bears and bulls in Friday’s jobs report, which explains the gyrations in futures following the release. The headline number was a major disappointment as the economy added just 194,000 jobs in September, well below the Dow Jones estimate of 500,000, the U.S. Labor Department reported.

On the positive side, the unemployment rate itself fell to a much lower point than economists forecast. At 4.8%, that’s the same level seen in late 2016. Plus, August’s jobs report miss was also revised up to 366,000 compared to the initial read of 235,000.

A bleaker labour picture could stall the Federal Reserve, as it prepares to slow its $120 billion-per-month bond-buying program.
Wall Street is also preparing for third-quarter earnings season, which kicks off next week.

Prices for 10-year Treasurys lost ground, raising yields to 1.60% from Thursday’s 1.57%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices picked up $1.29 to $79.59 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices recovered $17.00 to $1,776.30 U.S. an ounce.