TSX hits new record high as oil, jobs rise
Amid a sea of optimism, the main index of the TSX hit a new intraday record Friday, closing above 15,700 as oil prices gained and jobs data surprised.
The session started as it was to proceed, with most of the world’s major equity markets rising following a strong lead from Wall Street in the previous session. Oil prices increased on OPEC members adhering to output cuts.
The TSX gains were led by the IT group, up 2.9 per cent, and strong gains for energy, materials and financials. Only the telecoms group was lower at the close, by just 0.02 per cent.
Gold remained subdued though as investors bet on US corporate tax cuts ahead.
The S&P/TSX Composite Index closed up 111.8 (0.72 per cent)
The Dow Jones closed up 96.97 (0.48 per cent)
Oil is trending higher (Brent $56.64, WTI $53.78 at 4.40pm)
Gold is trending lower (1234.90 at 4.40pm)
The loonie is valued at U$0.7640
Service sector helps labour market momentum
The Canadian labour market added 48,000 jobs in January and 276,000 over 12 months, most of them in the last third of the year.
The 0.3 per cent rise in jobs in January, reported by Statistics Canada, combined with a 0.1 percentage point decrease in unemployment to 6.8 per cent.
Full-time jobs showed strength following a significant rise in December and were up 86,000 (0.6 per cent) over 12 months.
The jobs were largely created in the service sector, especially finance, insurance, real estate, rental and leasing; business, building and other support services; transportation and warehousing; and public administration.
Of the provinces, New Brunswick had fewer jobs in January than in December; there were gains in Ontario, British Columbia, Nova Scotia and Newfoundland and Labrador; and little change elsewhere.
Court threw out SNC case as evidence was “gossip”
Ontario Superior Court has dismissed a case involving allegations that SNC-Lavalin employees were planning to bribe officials to win a construction contract in Bangladesh.
Three executives were acquitted as Justice Ian Nordheimer said that the evidence provided by the RMCP involving wire-tap recordings, amounted to “nothing more than speculation, gossip and rumour.”
The case was dismissed last month but publication of the details were embargoed, the Globe and Mail reports.