News Column

Gold stocks push TSX higher

February 14, 2014



Bauer, Brookfield in focus







Rising gold stocks helped push the Toronto stock market modestly higher Friday as traders digested a mixed bag of economic indicators

The S&P/TSX composite index gained 32.04 points to greet noon at 14,033.69

The Canadian dollar fell 0.06 cents to 91.03 cents U.S.

It was relatively quiet on the earnings front after traders waded through a heavy slate of reports Thursday from the manufacturing, insurance, and resource sectors.

On Friday, Enbridge Inc. posted a fourth quarter net loss of $267 million as it recognized lower values for some of its assets. Ex-items, the pipeline and energy services company earned 44 cents a share, two cents short of estimates and its shares added 12 cents to $47.49.

Brookfield Asset Management Inc. posted fourth-quarter net income of $850 million U.S., or $1.08 per share. Funds from operations during the quarter increased to $1.03 billion U.S., or $1.59 per share, more than double a year earlier and its shares gained 57 cents to $43.35.

Meanwhile, sports equipment company Bauer Performance Sports Ltd. has signed a deal to buy the baseball and softball business of Easton-Bell Sports for $330 million U.S. Bauer shares added six cents to $14.24.

On the world economic front, lightly stronger-than-expected growth in Germany and France pushed the euro-zone's recovery up a gear in the fourth quarter and offered potential for a more robust 2014.

Closer to home, Statistics Canada reported that manufacturing sales in Canada decreased 0.9% in December, mostly the result of a dip by transportation equipment sales.

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange marched upward 5.65 points to 992.10

All but two of the 14 Toronto subgroups were higher, led by gold, up 1.1%, global base metals, up 0.8%, and materials, up 0.7%.

The two laggards were information technology and health-care, both off 0.1%.

ON WALLSTREET

Investors showed some affection for stocks Friday, but gold was really feeling the love on Valentine's Day.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average popped 75.87 points midday to 16,103.46.

The S&P 500 index moved higher 4.37 points to 1,834.20. The NASDAQ skidded 8.22 points to 4,232.41

The market has been on a tear in February. The S&P 500 has gained more than 3% this week and is now less than 1% away from an all-time high.

Gold has also gained momentum. The price of the precious metal rose above $1,320U.S. Gold is up nearly 4% this week.

Weight Watchers shares plunged more than 20% after the company slashed its earnings forecast and CEO Jim Chambers said 2014 would be "challenging."

Shares of GNC and Vitamin Shoppe were also down sharply.

But one trader was still betting on Weight Watchers, based on anecdotal evidence.

Jos. A. Bank shares fell after the clothing retailer announced that it was acquiring Eddie Bauer for $825 million U.S. Shares of rival Men's Wearhouse, which is hoping to buy Jos. A. Bank, were lower too.

Shares of Trulia fell sharply after the real estate website said losses in the fourth quarter widened from last year.

Cliffs Natural Resources jumped 5% after the company's quarterly results beat analysts' expectations. The company also rejected a proposal from a hedge fund that is seeking to break the company up and replace its CEO. Cliffs was one of the biggest gainers in the S&P 500 Friday.

Shares of Campbell Soup rose after the company reported better-than-expected earnings. Hyatt Hotels also reported earnings that topped expectations, sending shares higher in early trading.

Kraft Foods shares gained following quarterly results that beat expectations.

New York indexes were turned mainly higher after the latest reading on U.S. consumer confidence, the University of Michigan's index, was unchanged at 81.2. A slight drop had been expected. Another report showed that harsh winter weather led to U.S. factory output falling by 0.8% during January.

Prices for 10-year U.S. Treasuries were unchanged, keeping yields at Thursday's 2.74%.

Oil prices dipped 33 cents to $100.02 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices increased $17.40 to $1,317.50 U.S. an ounce.



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Source: Baystreet Stock Market Update (Canada)


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