TSX at 2016 high, oil remains steady
Oil prices have ended the session without any wide swings either way and the focus has temporarily shifted back to US interest rates. Markets are awaiting Friday’s jobs data for a steer on how the Fed may decide to vote at its next meeting but also for a snapshot of the US economy.
Energy stocks moved higher and combined with financials and miners to push the TSX to its highest level in 2016 so far.
Globally, most Asian markets closed higher despite weak Chinese data; Europe closed lower with healthcare and the Eurozone economy weighing; Wall Street closed higher.
The S&P/TSX Composite Index closed up 105.7 (0.81 per cent)
The Dow Jones closed up 44.24 (0.26 per cent)
Oil is trending higher (Brent $37.18, WTI $34.70 at 4.05pm)
Gold is trending higher (1263.60 at 4.05pm)
The loonie is valued at U$0.7464
Food costs to rise at George Weston
The company that owns Loblaw and Weston Foods is to increase food costs to add a buffer against a weaker Canadian dollar. George Weston will raise prices on certain fresh and frozen ranges to offset the impact of the lower loonie, which is likely to remain weaker for the rest of 2016. The firm announced fourth-quarter earnings of $138 million ($1.08 per share) Thursday, down from $151 million a year earlier ($1.18) although that quarter was a week longer.
Spanish energy firm cuts up to 15 per cent of Calgary workforce
Up to 15 per cent of the Calgary workforce of Spanish energy firm Repsol are being laid off due to the downturn in oil. The firm has not given exact numbers but said it was not an easy decision. The job cuts are the latest in an estimated 100,000 that have been lost from the industry since the oil price decline began more than 18 months ago.