News Column

Flat start for TSX

May 8, 2014

Valeant, Kinross in focus

Canadian stocks opened little changed on Thursday, underpinned by dovish comments by U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen.

The S&P/TSX composite index added 17.85 points to begin Thursday at 14,674.25. The Canadian benchmark index is up more than 7% this year.

The Canadian dollar hiked 0.22 cents at 91.97 cents U.S.

Drug maker Valeant Pharmaceuticals reported a 35% jump in cash earnings, helped by robust drug sales in the United States and in its Bausch & Lomb eyecare business. Valeant stock vaulted $1.44, or 1%, to $146.50

Kinross Gold Corp reported a sharp drop in first-quarter net earnings after the close on Wednesday due to weaker bullion prices but its production increased and costs edged lower. Kinross shares took on a nickel to $4.41.

National Bank Financial cut the rating on Intact Financial to sector perform from outperform. Intact shares ducked back 58 cents to $71.81.

On the economic beat, Statistics Canada reported this morning that its New Housing Price Index rose 0.2% in March, following an identical increase in February.

Elsewhere, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation reported that there were 17,124 housing starts in April, making for a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 194,809 units in April, an increase from 156,592 in March.


The TSX Venture Exchange nicked up 0.42 points to 1,001.46

All but four of the 14 Toronto subgroups moved higher in the first hour, with metals and mining jumping 0.9%, industrials chugging ahead 0.4%, and materials, up 0.2%.

The four laggards were weighed mostly by energy, falling off 0.2%, while global base metals and gold each shed 0.1%.


Investors south of the border are gearing up for more of their favourite market mover: Janet Yellen.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 57.87 points to 16,576.41

The S&P 500 took on 7.34 points to 1,885.55, and the NASDAQ composite index regained 17.34 points to 4,085.01.

Shares of Tesla tanked 10%. The company's earnings beat expectations Wednesday, but Tesla forecast that expenses will continue to rise as it expands into China, develops its next vehicle and breaks ground on a new factory.

SolarCity surged 10% after the solar panel company beat earnings estimates and subsequently received a series of analyst upgrades.

The Keurig Green Mountain coffee machine is on overdrive this morning. Shares spiked after the company posted double-digit sales and earnings growth for the first quarter.

The company also announced the expansion of its partnership with the J.M. Smucker Company. The deal makes Smucker's coffee brands such as Folgers available in Keurig products and brewing systems.

Dish Network declined after the satellite provider reported lower profit for the quarter and said it added television subscribers at a slower pace than the same period last year.

Barclays got a boost in London trading after the bank said it would cut 19,000 jobs over the next three years.

Stocks got a late boost Wednesday from Federal Reserve chairwoman Janet Yellen, when she made remarks to a congressional panel signaling her central bank's continued support for the economy, although she again refused to give clues about when the Fed might raise interest rates.

Prices for 10-year U.S. Treasuries fell, lifting yields to 2.61% from Wednesday's 2.59%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions

Oil prices demurred 54 cents to $100.23 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices gained three dollars to $1,291.90 U.S. an ounce.

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Source: Baystreet Stock Market Update (Canada)

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