Equities in Toronto retreated from a one-month high as the clock approached noon on Friday, even though better-than-expected employment data underscored a consistent economic recovery from the coronavirus.
The TSX moved into the red by noon, sliding 8.56 points to 16,525.98.
The Canadian dollar added 0.37 cents to 76.17 cents U.S.
The largest percentage gainer on the TSX was Dundee Precious Metal, which jumped 63 cents, or 6.4%, to $10.35, after posting consistent third-quarter production numbers and reiterating its annual guidance.
NFI Group fell 75 cents, or 4.3%, to $16.72, after National Bank of Canada cut the stock’s target price.
TD Securities raised the target price on Advantage Oil & Gas to $3.00 from $2.75. Advantage Oil shares moved higher two cents, or 1%, to $1.95.
JP Morgan established the price target on Canadian National Railway at $154.00. CN just broke even, three cents, to $144.42.
National Bank of Canada raised the rating on Cargojet to outperform from sector perform. Shares in Cargojet jumped $7.39, or 3.7%, to $221.50.
On the economic docket, Statistics Canada reported that, following an increase of 246,000, or 1.4% in August, employment rose by 378,000, or 2.1%, in September. The unemployment rate declined 1.2 percentage points to 9.0% in September, down from the peak of 13.7% in May.
The TSX Venture Exchange surged 9.65 points, or 1.4%, to 724.99.
Seven of the 12 TSX subgroups were positive by noon hour, led by gold, ahead 1.8%, materials, better by 1.5%, and information technology, clicking higher 0.8%.
The five laggards were weighed most by energy, down 2%, financials, off 0.8%, and communications, the worse off by 0.4%.
U.S. stocks shot higher early Friday as Wall Street continued to search for clarity surrounding a new potential stimulus bill.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average popped 238.87 points to 28,664.38.
The S&P 500 added 32.35 points to 3,479.18.
The NASDAQ advanced 124.32 points, or 1.1%, to 11,545.30.
Those gains put the major averages on pace for solid weekly advances. The Dow is up 3.4% week to date, on pace for it biggest one-week gain since August. The S&P 500 hiked 3.8%, and NASDAQ has advanced 4.3% for the week.
Cruise operator stocks jumped after the White House announced Vice President Mike Pence will meet with industry officials later in the day. Carnival sailed higher 1.3%, and Norwegian Cruise Line shares were up 0.7%. Royal Caribbean gained 0.8%.
Investors also digested news on the coronavirus treatment front. GenMark Diagnostics said after the close Thursday that the Food and Drug Administration gave the company emergency clearance to run a test that screens for the flu, coronavirus and other viruses.
Plus, shares of Gilead rose 1.7% after a study showed its anti-viral treatment remdesivir showed that the drug cut recovery time by five days compared to patients who received a placebo. The drug also reduced fatality in patients needing low flow oxygen.
Prices for the 10-Year Treasury gave way, raising yields to 0.79% from Thursday’s 0.77%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.
Oil prices were unchanged at $41.19 U.S. a barrel.
Gold prices spiked $35.10 to $1,930.20 U.S. an ounce.
Dow Heads for Best Week Since August