TSX higher again as materials rise near 5 per cent
Gold prices hit a 4-week high Thursday and gave Canada’s producers a welcome boost which, in turn, saw a gain of nearly 5 per cent for the materials group.
The continued strength of the main TSX index put it within striking distance of its all-time high from 2014 despite decline for 6 of the sectors. Telecoms, consumer staples and the heavily-weighted financials groups were the others that closed higher.
Wall Street had mixed fortunes with the Nasdaq approaching a near-record while the S&P500 and the Dow were lower. European markets closed flat while Asian markets were mixed with Hong Kong the star performer.
The S&P/TSX Composite Index closed up 69.83 (0.45 per cent)
The Dow Jones closed down 42.87 (0.21 per cent)
Oil is trending higher (Brent $56.87, WTI $53.73 at 4.40pm)
Gold is trending higher (1180.70 at 4.40pm)
The loonie is valued at U$0.7552
Canada’s best oil customer may not need us soon
The US is heading towards an energy shift in the next decade which would spell problems for Canada’s exporters. The EIA said Thursday that the US is set to become a net exporter of energy within the next decade having been a net importer for more than 50 years. Canada will be faced with requiring new markets for energy exports and could even face competition domestically from US imports.
Decades of deficits for Ottawa predicts Finance Dept.
A report which suggests that Canada’s federal government could face decades of budget deficits has been published by the Finance Department.
The prediction is that, assuming no significant changes in policy, the federal deficit will run through 2050-51 and may exceed $1.5 trillion as an aging cuts income tax revenues, decreases productivity and increases benefits for seniors.
While the report notes that long-term forecasts are often inaccurate, it also suggests that economic growth can be boosted by up to 22 per cent in 2055 if the government adopts policies that encourage participation in the workforce.
Industrial products more expensive
Canada’s Industrial Product Price Index (IPPI) increased 0.3 per cent in November, Statistics Canada said Thursday.
Higher prices for motorized and recreational vehicles and primary non-ferrous metal products were largely moderated by lower prices for energy and petroleum products.
The Raw Materials Price Index (RMPI) decreased 2.0 per cent, mainly due to lower prices for crude energy products.