Canada’s stock index rose on Friday as investors cheered cooling wages both domestically and in the United States, with the main index headed for its best week in six as gold stocks rallied on firm bullion prices against a softening dollar.

The TSX zoomed 265.1 points, or 1.4%, to move toward noon EST Friday at 19,771.94.

The Canadian dollar sprang up 0.4 cents at 74.12 cents U.S.

In company news, a U.S. judge said she will rule in a few months if former President Donald Trump erred in 2021 when he approved Lithium Americas Corp’s Thacker Pass lithium mining project in northern Nevada. Lithium Americas shares moved into the afternoon up 18 cents to $25.57.

Vermilion Energy inched up 1.4% after it raised its quarterly cash dividend by 25% and reinstated its share buyback program. Vermilion shares strengthened 31 cents, or 1.5%, to $20.64.

On the economic slate, Statistics Canada reported employment rose by 104,000 (+0.5%) in December, and the unemployment rate declined 0.1 percentage points to 5.0%, just above the record low of 4.9% reached in June and July.

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange leaped 8.2 points, or 1.4%, to 579.32.

All but one of the 12 subgroups had turned positive by midday, with energy up 3%, materials better by 2.2%, and gold stocks up 2%.

Only information technology drifted into the red, and 0.3% at that.

ON WALLSTREET

U.S. stocks rose Friday after the December jobs report and a manufacturing survey showed signs that inflation may be cooling amid the Federal Reserve’s interest rate hikes.

The Dow Jones Industrials popped 516.53 points, or 1.6%, by noon Friday 33,446.61.

The S&P 500 advanced 59.67 points, or 1.5%, at 3,867.77.

The NASDAQ Composite Index leaped 148.87 points, or 1.4%, to 10,454.11.

With Friday’s gains, stocks may tip into positive territory on the week. The Dow is currently up 0.8% in the first week of the year and the S&P 500 is up 0.5%. The NASDAQ is still down on the week, set to fall 0.4%.

The December non-farm payrolls report showed that the U.S. economy added 223,000 jobs last month, slightly higher than the expected 200,000 jobs economists polled by the Dow Jones expected. In addition, wages grew slower than anticipated, increasing 0.3% on the month where economists expected 0.4%.

Prices for the 10-year Treasury climbed sharply, lowering yields to 3.62% from Thursday’s 3.73%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices gained $1.22 to $74.89 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices brightened $24.40 to $1,865 U.S. an ounce.

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