Canadian stocks extended gains for a third straight day to end sharply higher Friday, led mostly by resource stocks as investors weighed some disappointing jobs data from the U.S. which raised hopes of additional stimulus measures from the Federal Reserve in its upcoming policy meet next week.
Investors also soaked in the European Central Bank's stimulus measures in the form of bond buying program, China's infrastructure stimulus measures, and some positive jobs data from Canada, all of which lifted the gloomy markets.
The U.S. Labor Department jobs data showed non-farm payrolls increased in August, but much lower than what analysts expected. Nevertheless, unemployment rate for August dropped from the previous month.
The S&P/TSX Composite Index closed Friday at 12,268.01, up 128.28 points or 1.06 percent. The index touched an intraday high of 12,270.97 and a low of 12,144.36.
The Metals & Mining Index soared 8.0 percent, led by Teck Resources Limited (TCK.B.TO) which surged 9.17 percent and First Quantum Minerals Ltd. (FM.TO) jumping 9.76 percent. Lundin Mining Corp. (LUN.TO) climbed 6.49 percent, while Osisko Mining Corp. (OSK.TO) gathered 8.37 percent.
The Energy Index gained 2.07 percent, after U.S. crude oil futures for October delivery moved up $0.89 or 0.9 percent to close at $96.42 a barrel Friday on the NYMEX.
Among energy stocks, Canadian Natural Resources Limited (CNQ.TO) gathered 4.82 percent, Encana Corp. (ECA.TO) advanced 1.65 percent, and Suncor Energy Inc. (SU.TO) rose 2.32 percent.
The Financial Index gained 0.37 percent with Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO) up 0.41 percent, while Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS.TO) shed 0.30 percent. Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD.TO) gathering 0.15 percent, while Manulife Financial Corp. (MFC.TO) gained 2.17 percent.
The Global Gold Index gained 2.14 percent, with gold futures for December delivery climbing $34.90 or 2.1 percent to close at $1,740.50 an ounce Friday on the NYMEX.
The Capped Materials Index gained 3.05 percent.
Among gold stocks, Barrick Gold (ABX.TO) rose 2.59 percent, Goldcorp Inc. (G.TO) gained 1.69 percent, Yamana Gold Inc. (YRI.TO) was up 1.45 percent, Eldorado Gold Corp. (ELD.TO) gained 6.29 percent, and Kinross Gold (K.TO) advanced 5.58 percent.
Among heavyweights, fertilizer maker Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan Inc. (POT.TO) rose 2.33 percent, while transportation systems maker Bombardier Inc. (BBD.A.TO, BBD.B.TO) gained 1.99 percent.
The Information Technology Index gained 0.81 percent, with smartphone maker Research In Motion Limited (RIM.TO) surging 6.20 percent.
Athletic apparel company Lululemon Athletica Inc. (LLL.TO) surged over 12 percent after reporting improved second quarter net income of $57.22 million or $0.39 per share from prior-year. Third quarter earnings are expected in the range of $0.34 to $0.36 per share, above analysts' estimates of $0.33 per share.
Software company Cardiocomm Solutions Inc. (EKG.V) skyrocketed 19.35 percent after revealing clearance from Health Canada to sell their HeartCheck ECG PEN to both consumers and patients.
Media company Transcontinental Inc. (TCL_A.TO) dived 3.95 percent after reporting a lower third quarter net income of C$8.1 million or C$0.10 per share compared to C$31.5 million or C$0.39 per share in the same quarter last year.
In economic news Statistics Canada said the nation's unemployment rate held steady at 7.3 percent as employment rose by 34,000 in August, helped by an increase in part-time work. On a year-over-year basis, employment increased by 1.0 percent or 177,000. Economists expected 10,000 job additions in the month of August.
In economic news from the U.S., the Labor Department revealed employment increased by 96,000 jobs in August following a downwardly revised increase of 141,000 jobs in July. Economists had expected an increase of about 125,000 jobs compared to the addition of 163,000 jobs originally reported for the previous month. Despite the weaker than expected job growth, the unemployment rate dropped to 8.1 percent in August from 8.3 in July amid a notable decrease in the size of the workforce.
Elsewhere, China has added stimulus worth more than $158 billion as the National Development and Reform Commission approved a slew of infrastructure projects this week to help the economy counter the global gloom, which has increasingly diluted export gains.
Germany's exports and imports increased unexpectedly in July, data from Destatis revealed. Exports grew 0.5 percent month-on-month, partially offsetting June's 1.4 percent fall. Likewise, imports gained 0.9 percent after falling 2.9 percent in June. Economists had forecast a 0.5 percent drop in exports and 0.3 percent decrease in imports.
Meanwhile, U.K. industrial production recovered in July at a faster than expected pace, data from the Office for National Statistics showed. Industrial output grew 2.9 percent month-on-month, reversing June's 2.4 percent fall. The increase exceeded the 1.5 percent rise forecast by economists.
by RTT Staff Writer
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