Financials gain, resources fall, TSX flat
Financial stocks gained Friday as stronger-then-expected US jobs data added weight to a December interest rate rise south of the border. There was also improvement for Canada’s labour market.
Resources stocks were weaker though as oil and metals prices dipped. Oil stabilized down 2 per cent as the supply glut concerns were somewhat tempered by a lower US rig count. Gold continued lower on expectation that it will be hit in December if the Fed does indeed raise interest rates.
The main index of the Toronto Stock Exchange managed to balance out to end essentially flat. Wall Street ended mixed with the Dow and Nasdaq managing slim gains.
Asian and European markets closed mixed.
The S&P/TSX Composite Index closed down 5.48 (0.04 per cent)
The Dow Jones closed up 46.70 (0.26 per cent)
Oil is trending lower (Brent $47.62, WTI $44.51 at 4.05pm)
Gold is trending lower (1086.90 at 4.05pm)
The loonie is valued at U$0.7519
Canadian jobs market improves
Statistics Canada reported that employment increased by 44,000 (+0.2 per cent) in October, bringing the number of people employed in Canada to over 18 million for the first time. The increase follows four months of unchanged numbers. The unemployment rate to 7.0 per cent (from 6.9 per cent). Compared with 12 months earlier, employment was up 143,000 (+0.8 per cent), with all of the gains in full-time work. During the same period, the total number of hours worked grew by 0.7 per cent. The net gains were for women aged 55 and older; and in public administration, wholesale and retail trade, as well as accommodation and food services. Alberta was the only province were employment fell.
White House says no to Keystone XL
President Obama said Friday that the proposed Keystone XL pipeline project is not in the national interests of the United States. In rejecting TransCanada’s plan the president said that he had informed Justin Trudeau of his decision who expressed his disappointment. TransCanada shares were down 4 per cent on the news.
Blackberry eyes further acquisitions
Software is firmly to way forward for Blackberry as handset sales continue to struggle. CEO John Chen told Bloomberg that the company is in good shape with $3 billion in cash and that it will be making more acquisitions. He said that his plan is for the Ontario company to be pulling in $500 million in software revenue by March 2016 and that he will exit the hardware market if it cannot be a profitable part of the business.