Exciting End to Week for Markets

Toromont, Canopy Enjoy Huge Gains

Heading into a long weekend, stocks in Canada’s largest market took off like thoroughbreds, producing triple-digit gains in the major index, owing mostly to strength in industrial and health-care issues.

The S&P/TSX Composite Index ballooned 142.26 points to end the day and the week at 15,838.24

The Canadian dollar recovered 0.27 cents at 75.47 cents U.S.

Canadian markets are closed Monday for Family Day.

The largest percentage gainer on the TSX was Toromont Industries, whose shares jumped $6.06, or 10.2%, to $65.61, after topping quarterly earnings' estimates. Air Canada was also a top gainer among industrials, leaping $1.13, or 3.5%, to $33.11.

Another huge gainer was Aphria, which rose 62 cents, or 5.2%, to $12.67, after a special committee concluded the acquisition of its LatAm assets was within acceptable range. Canopy Growth triumphed $1.86, or 3%, to $63.14.

Financials also made strides, Royal Bank acquiring 83 cents to $101.50, while Scotiabank gained 50 cents to $74.82.

Tech stocks didn’t fare so well, as Constellation Software demurred $35.85, or 3.2%, to $1,096.82.

Among real-estate concerns, Colliers International Group lost 18 cents to $90.92.

On the economic slate, Statistics Canada said foreign investors reduced their holdings of Canadian securities by $19.0 billion in December, led by a record divestment in Canadian bonds. At the same time, Canadian investors reduced their holdings of foreign securities by $425 million, on sales of U.S. Treasury instruments.

Meanwhile, the Canadian Real Estate Association said national home sales rose 3.6% between December 2018 and January 2019. However, actual (not seasonally adjusted) home sales were down by 4% from a year ago. The number of newly listed homes edged up 1% month-over-month in January.

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange gained 7.52 points to 615.92

All but two of the 12 TSX subgroups were higher, as industrials and health-care each improved 1.4%, while financials were 1.3% stronger.

The two laggards were information technology and real-estate, each down 0.4%.

ON WALLSTREET

Stocks surged on Friday amid increasing hopes for a U.S.-China trade deal as equities posted another solid weekly gain.

The Dow Jones Industrials took off for the stratosphere, jumping 443.86 points, or 1.7%, to 25,883.25, as J.P. Morgan Chase and Goldman Sachs outperformed.

The S&P 500 regained 29.87 points, or 1.1%, to 2,775.60, led by the energy and industrials sectors.

The NASDAQ Composite gained 45.46 points to 7,472.41

Bank stocks powered this rise. Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, J.P. Morgan Chase, Citigroup and Bank of America each advanced nearly 3% or more.

The 30-stock Dow's eight-week winning streak is its longest since the one ending Nov. 3, 2017. The NASDAQ also posted its eighth consecutive weekly gain. The S&P 500, meanwhile, closed its seventh weekly gain in eight. The indexes were all up more than 1% entering Friday's session.

On the data front Friday, industrial production for January fell 0.6%, towering over an expected increase of 0.3%. Consumer sentiment data are scheduled for release later on Friday.

Chinese President Xi Jinping said trade talks between the U.S. and China will continue next week in Washington. This comes after a U.S. trade delegation led by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer was in Beijing this week.
China and the U.S. are trying to strike a trade deal before an early March deadline.

Prices for the benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury slid slightly, raising yields to 2.66% from Thursday’s 2.65%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices gained $1.34 to $55.75 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices moved ahead $10.90 to $1,324.80 U.S. an ounce.