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Canadian Stocks Are Rising As Tensions Ease - Canadian Commentary

The Canadian stock market is trading to the upside Monday morning. Risk appetite has returned as geopolitical concerns have eased and the damage from Hurricane Irma was less extensive than had been feared.

The majority of the Canadian sectors are rising in early trade. Information technology, healthcare and financial stocks are leading the way higher. Meanwhile, gold stocks are falling as investors exit safe havens.

Markets in Europe are trading in the green Monday and markets on Wall Street are also rising in early trade. Investors are breathing a sigh of relief after Hurricane Irma proved to be less catastrophic than had been anticipated and North Korea refrained from launching another missile over the weekend.

The benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index is up 53.49 points or 0.36 percent at 15,038.81.

On Friday, the index closed down 39.21 points or 0.26 percent, at 14,985.32. The index scaled an intraday high of 15,009.19 and a low of 14,953.90.

The Capped Healthcare Index is higher by 1.12 percent. Valeant Pharmaceuticals International is rising 2.91 percent.

The Capped Information Technology Index is gaining 0.94 percent. BlackBerry (BB.TO) is rising 0.82 percent and Sierra Wireless (SW.TO) is climbing 2.11 percent. Constellation Software (CSU.TO) is also higher by 0.82 percent.

The heavyweight Financial Index is increasing 0.63 percent. Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO) is rising 0.53 percent and Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS.TO) is climbing 0.64 percent. Bank of Montreal (BMO.TO) is up 0.79 percent and Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CM.TO) is advancing 0.61 percent. National Bank of Canada (NA.TO) is gaining 0.72 percent.

The Energy Index is rising 0.50 percent. Crude oil prices are little changed Monday morning, holding around $47 a barrel. Saudi Arabia said it is open to another supply quota extension.

Crescent Point Energy (CPG.TO) is climbing 0.85 percent and Enbridge (ENB.TO) is adding 0.18 percent. Encana (ECA.TO) is advancing 1.25 percent and Suncor Energy (SU.TO) is higher by 0.40 percent. Cenovus Energy (CVE.TO) is increasing 2.44 percent and Imperial Oil (IMO.TO) is gaining 0.70 percent.

The Capped Telecommunication Services Index is up 0.22 percent. BCE (BCE.TO) is rising 0.02 percent and TELUS (T.TO) is climbing 0.39 percent. Rogers Communications (RCI-B.TO) is gaining 0.23 percent.

The Capped Industrials Index is up 0.19 percent. Finning International (FTT.TO) is advancing 0.50 percent and WestJet Airlines (WJA.TO) is adding 0.43 percent.

The Gold Index is decreasing 1.52 percent. Gold prices are falling Monday morning as geopolitical concerns have eased. North Korea refrained from launching more missiles over the weekend, despite speculation that it would do so.

Eldorado Gold (ELD.TO) is losing 4.42 percent and Goldcorp (G.TO) is decreasing 1.28 percent. B2Gold (BTO.TO) is weakening by 1.49 percent and Yamana Gold (YRI.TO) is falling 4.29 percent. Kinross Gold (K.TO) is declining 3.08 percent and Barrick Gold (ABX.TO) is surrendering 1.30 percent. IAMGOLD (IMG.TO) is losing 1.17 percent.

The Capped Materials Index is down 0.29 percent. Agnico Eagle Mines (AEM.TO) is declining 2.37 percent and Franco-Nevada (FNV.TO) is losing 0.37 percent.

Alamos Gold Inc. (AGI.TO) announced Monday that it has agreed to acquire Richmont Mines Inc. (RIC.TO). The deal implies a total equity value of approximately $770 million on a fully diluted in-the-money basis and an enterprise value of $683 million. Alamos Gold is sinking 14.73 percent, while Richmont Mines is climbing 3.44 percent.

On the economic front, data from the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. this morning showed that Canadian housing starts rose to an annual rate of 223,232 in August. Economists had expected housing starts to fall to an annual rate of 212,000.

China's consumer price inflation rose more than expected in August and producer prices advanced on higher raw material costs, data from the National Bureau of Statistics showed over the weekend.

Consumer price inflation accelerated to 1.8 percent in August from 1.4 percent in July. This was the fastest since January and exceeded the expected level of 1.6 percent.

Nonetheless, inflation was well below the government's full year target of around 3 percent.

Another report from NBS showed that industrial producer price increased to a 4-month high of 6.3 percent in August from 5.5 percent in July. Prices were forecast to gain 5.4 percent.

The French economy is expected to grow at a steady pace, as previously projected, in the third quarter, according to survey data published by Bank of France. Gross domestic product is forecast to expand 0.5 percent in the third quarter, in line with the second estimate, and the same as in the second quarter.

In commodities, crude oil futures for October delivery are down 0.25 or 0.53 percent at $47.23 a barrel.

Natural gas for October is up 0.047 or 1.63 percent at $2.937 per million btu.

Gold futures for December are down 11.89 or 0.88 percent at $1,339.30 an ounce.

Silver for December is down 0.183 or 1.01 percent at $17.94 an ounce.

by RTTNews Staff Writer

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