TORONTO — Canada’s main stock index closed the week setting another new high, with strong jobs reports along with crude price gains and positive earnings reports lifting the heavyweight energy sector.
The S&P/TSX composite index was up 113.69 points to a record close of 21,455.82, after hitting an intraday high of 21,473.78.
In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average was up 203.72 points at 36,327.95. The S&P 500 index was up 17.47 points at 4,697.53, while the Nasdaq composite was up 31.28 points at 15,971.59.
Stock markets responded favourably to October employment reports in the U.S. and Canada that supported the assumption of a stronger economy and helped reopening industries such as hotels, airlines and cruise lines, said Mike Archibald, vice-president and portfolio manager with AGF Investments Inc.
“Air Canada is obviously the main beneficiary of that, but CAE is also up sharply on that as well,” he said in an interview.
Air Canada’s shares climbed 6.2 per cent despite criticism of CEO Michael Rousseau’s handling of his mastery of the French language, which has been described as a PR disaster. CAE shares rose 6.6 per cent to help the industrials sector.
“So there’s definitely a move back into those particular stocks today I think just on the confidence that the economy is continuing to heal and maybe at a slightly faster pace than we thought, call it a month ago.”
Energy led the TSX, gaining 2.6 per cent as shares of Arc Resources Ltd. and Enerplus Corp. rose 7.5 and 7.2 per cent, respectively.
Enbridge Inc. climbed three per cent after the Calgary company reported higher adjusted profits and a 26 per cent increase in operating revenues to $11.47 billion.
The December crude oil contract was up US$2.46 at US$81.27 per barrel and the December natural gas contract was down two cents at US$5.52 per mmBTU.
Archibald said there was some concern Friday that U.S. President Joe Biden would release inventory from its strategic petroleum reserve to quell crude price increases after OPEC and its allies rejected his call for more oil output from the cartel.
It’s expected that OPEC will gradually add 400,000 barrels per day into the market.
Materials increased 1.6 per cent as gold prices continued to climb, pushing New Gold Inc. up 6.7 per cent and Iamgold Corp. 6.2 per cent higher.
The December gold contract was up US$23.30 at US$1,816.80 an ounce and the December copper contract was up two cents at US$4.34 a pound.
Archibald said gold’s price increase is tied to a surprising fall in yields with the U.S. 10-year treasury dropping to 1.454 per cent.
He said good jobs numbers usually lead to higher bond yields, but a much smaller U.S. stimulus bill would mean less supply of bonds to the marketplace.
“There’s been this battle all year as to whether you’re bullish or bearish on the bond market. And today clearly despite this strong jobs number they’re buying bonds aggressively, so that’s moving yields down and obviously when that happens, you tend to get pretty good associated up moves in commodities, and particularly in gold.”
The consumer discretionary sector moved up 0.8 per cent as Canada Goose Holdings Inc. surged 19.3 per cent after reporting very strong results.
Meanwhile, health care was one of three losing sectors on the day. It lost 1.4 per cent as Canopy Growth Corp. plunged 11.7 per cent after pushing back its profitability target as it reported a $16.3-million loss and said it would close one of its greenhouses.
The Canadian dollar traded for 80.31 cents US compared with 80.33 cents US on Thursday.
The Toronto stock market is up 23.1 per cent so far in 2021 as trading enters what is historically a strong period of the year, said Archibald.
“We’re getting right into the sweet spot of the seasonal calendar, so I expect that you’re probably going to continue to see more upside into the end of the year.”
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 5, 2021.
Companies in this story: (TSX:AC, TSX:CAE, TSX:ERF, TSX:ARX, TSX:GOOS, TSX:WEED, TSX:NGD, TSX:IMG, TSX:GSPTSE, TSX:CADUSD=X)
Ross Marowits, The Canadian Press