TSX Still Hoping to Break Slump

Banks, Natural Resources Lead Stocks Higher

Canada's main stock index broke a three-day losing run on Wednesday as a 3% jump in oil prices boosted energy shares and a report revived hopes of a preliminary trade deal between the United States and China.

The TSX Composite Index remained afloat 24.61 points by noon Wednesday at 16,916.76

The Canadian dollar moved higher 0.43 to 75.66 cents U.S.

Bank of Nova Scotia gained three cents to $73.97, and Toronto-Dominion Bank added nine cents to $75.81, while Royal Bank of Canada slid $1.92, or 1.8%, to $105.26, after missing quarterly profit estimates, as its capital markets division suffered a dearth of deals.

Canadian Natural Resources gained $1.36, or 3.7%, to $37.57, after saying it expects to spend $4.05 billion in 2020, $250 million more than in 2019, and after Alberta lifted some curtailments on new oil wells last month.

The largest percentage gainers on the TSX were Hudbay Minerals, which jumped 35 cents, or 8.3%, to $4.57, and First Quantum Minerals, which rose 42 cents, or 3.6%, to $11.88

Westshore Terminals Investment fell $1.45, or 6.8%, the most on the TSX, to $20.00, and the second biggest decliner was Ero Copper, down 88 cents, or 4.1%, to $20.36.

As expected, the Bank of Canada Wednesday maintained its target for the overnight rate at 1.75% The Bank Rate is correspondingly 2% and the deposit rate is 1.5%

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange gained 0.83 points to 539.15

The 12 Toronto subgroups were evenly divided, as energy regained 2.4%, information technology advanced 1%, and industrials picked up 0.6%.

The half-dozen laggards were led by gold, dulling in price 1.5%, while consumer discretionary slid 1%, and materials surrendered 0.9%.

ON WALLSTREET

Stocks jumped Wednesday, boosted by a news report from Bloomberg that said the U.S. and China were edging closer to a trade deal.

The Dow Jones Industrials gained 173.56 points, to greet noon Wednesday at 27,676.37.

The S&P 500 regained 18.87 points to 3,112.07.

The NASDAQ picked up 42.06 points to 8,562.71

The Bloomberg report, which cited people familiar with the talks, said the two countries were moving closer to agreeing on the amount of tariffs that would be rolled back in a so-called phase-one trade deal. President Donald Trump also said Wednesday that trade talks with China were going well.

Shares of chipmakers and Apple rose Wednesday. Apple was up 1.2%. Nvidia moved higher 0.7% and Micron Technology traded higher by 2.3%. These stocks have been whipsawed by trade deal related headlines for the last two years.

On the data front, private payrolls rose by just 67,000 last month, according to data from ADP and Moody’s Analytics, or well below an estimate of 150,000.

Prices for the 10-Year U.S. Treasury sagged, raising yields to 1.78% from Tuesday’s 1.72%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices gained $2.36 at $58.46 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices sank $5.20 to $1,479.20 U.S. an ounce.