Equity markets in Canada’s biggest centre fought their way into positive territory, basically shrugging off the effects of U.S. President Donald Trump’s positive test for COVID-19. Investors were also mindful as negotiators south of the line failed to agree a fiscal stimulus package.
The TSX gained 14.71 points to close the day and the week at 16,199.25, a gain on the week of 73 points, or 0.45%
The Canadian dollar backtracked 0.11 cents to 75.15 cents U.S.
Energy stocks had been stuck in a rut much of the day, but got up a head of steam by day’s end, most notably, Husky Energy, pumping 10 cents, or 3.4%, higher to $3.06, while Vermilion Energy took on 15 cents, or 5%, to $3.14.
Financial stocks also cruised higher, with Power Corporation 81 cents, or 3.1%, more powerful, to $26.91, while Canadian Western Bank strengthened 53 cents, or 2%, to $27.45.
Among communications, Corus Entertainment grabbed four cents, or 1.4%, to $2.95, while TELUS obtained 29 cents, or 1.2%, to $23.68.
Tech stocks were another matter, as Docebo shed $2.12, or 4.2%, to $47.93, while Sierra Wireless docked 62 cents, or 4.2%, to $14.24.
Among health-care issues, Trillium Therapeutics fell $1.14, or 5.9%, to $18.18, while Aurinia Pharmaceuticals loosed 63 cents, or 3.2%, to $18.80.
In the gold patch, Centerra Gold dipped 42 cents, or 2.7%, to $15.43, while NovaGold went south 38 cents, or 2.5%, to $14.88.
The TSX Venture Exchange slumped 9.32 points, or 1.3%, on the day to 708.60. On the week, the index gained 13 points, or 1.9%.
Seven of the 12 TSX subgroups had turned positive by the close, with energy surging 1.2%, financials richer by 1%, and communications better by 0.9%.
The five laggards were weighed most by information technology, settling 1.2%, health-care, down 1.1%, and gold, falling 1%.
U.S. stocks fell in volatile trading on Friday after President Donald Trump’s coronavirus diagnosis fueled concerns about the election and a worsening pandemic.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 134.09 points to finish the day and the week at 27,682.81.
The S&P 500 slid 32.36 points, or 1%, to 3,348.44.
The NASDAQ tumbled 251.49 points, or 2.2%, to 11,075.02.
Major averages clawed back some of the steep losses after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi signaled aid for the airline industry could be coming soon, perhaps even as part of a much-anticipated broad relief bill.
Shares of airlines jumped higher in unison after Pelosi called on the industry to delay furloughs, saying relief for airline workers is “imminent.” American Airlines and United erased earlier losses, American leaping 3.3%, United popping 2.4%.
Technology shares led the declines on Friday with Apple, Amazon, Microsoft and Facebook all losing more than 2.5%.
Stocks traded off their opening lows on some optimism Congress will come together on a coronavirus stimulus deal.
The House passed the $2.2-trillion Democratic coronavirus stimulus bill Thursday night, but Republicans oppose this package.
The president’s diagnosis added more uncertainty to the election, an event that was already weighing on the market and keeping traders on edge as they attempted to evaluate the possible outcomes.
Shares of stocks tied to the economy reopening fell as the news highlighted the risk of a second wave of the coronavirus and raised fears that maybe lawmakers would slow the pace at which they relaxed coronavirus measures.
White House physician Dr. Sean Conley said in a memo, “The President and First Lady are both well at this time, and they plan to remain at home within the White House during their convalescence.”
Conley also said he expects Trump to “continue carrying out his duties without disruption while recovering.”
Trump was experiencing “mild symptoms” after testing positive for the virus, according to media reports.
Also weighing on the sentiment was a worse-than-expected September jobs report. Figures released Friday by the U.S. Labor Department showed non-farm payroll rose by 661,000 in September, in the final jobs report before the November election. Economists surveyed by Dow Jones expected a jobs gain of 800,000. The unemployment rate fell to 7.9% last month.
Prices for the 10-Year Treasury moved slightly lower, raising yields to 0.69% from Thursday’s 0.68%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.
Oil prices retreated $1.75 to $36.97 U.S. a barrel.
Gold prices sank $9.60 to $1,906.70 U.S. an ounce.