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 January 29, 2016 - 1:12 AM EST
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TSX Surges, Again, Powered by Oil

Microsoft in Focus

Equity markets rose on Friday along with gains for global stock markets after the Bank of Japan moved to negative interest rates, while a rally in crude oil prices added to support for the resource-linked market.

The S&P/TSX composite index added 79.04 points to open Friday at 12,670.97

The Canadian dollar inched up 0.04 cents to 71.33 cents

U.S.

Brookfield Asset Management Inc has been exploring an acquisition in recent months of General Growth Properties Inc, the

U.S.
mall operator with a market value of $24 billion, according to people familiar with the matter.

Brookfield shares climbed 44 cents, or 1.1%, to $42.14

Endeavour Silver Corp said Thursday it will will reduce production of the precious metal this year by more than a quarter because of low prices. Meanwhile, BMO cut the rating on Endeavour Silver to underperform

Endeavour shares were static at $1.74.

Raymond James raised the rating on Athabasca Oil to outperform from market perform.

Athabasca shares acquired a penny to $1.51.

BofA Merrill cut the rating on WestJet Airlines to underperform from neutral. WestJet shares were 32 cents, or 1.6%, to $19.03.

With consumer inflation just 0.1% in the year to December despite three years of aggressive money-printing, the BOJ's policy board decided in a narrow 5-4 vote to charge a 0.1%interest on a portion of current account deposits that financial institutions hold with the central bank.

On the economic beat,

Canada's
Gross Domestic Product rose 0.3% in November, mostly as a result of increases in wholesale and retail trade, oil and gas extraction as well as manufacturing. GDP's November gain follows a 0.5% decline in September and no growth in October.

Statistics

Canada
also said that its Industrial Product Price Index declined 0.2% in December, mainly as a result of lower prices for energy and petroleum products. The Raw Materials Price Index fell 5.0% in the same month, led by lower prices for crude energy products.

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange moved up 2.91 points to 495.34

All but one of the 13 TSX subgroups were higher, as health-care gained 3.6%, metals and mining was up 3.3%, and energy hiked 1.4%.

Only financials missed out on the party, failing 0.4%.

ON WALLSTREET

U.S.
stocks traded higher Friday, the last trading day of January, after the Bank of Japan unexpectedly adopted a negative interest rate policy.

The Dow Jones industrial average skyrocketed 220.28 points, or 1.4%, to 16,298.92. Microsoft rose more than 5% after reporting earnings that beat expectations. Amazon slumped about 8% in morning trade.

The S&P 500 pointed up 21.68 points, or 1.2%, to 1,915.04, with information technology leading eight sectors higher and consumer discretionary and energy the only decliners.

The NASDAQ index bolted higher 57.49 points, or 1.3%, to 4,564.17.

Microsoft beat on both the top and bottom line, helped by improvement in its cloud services business as well as cost-cutting.

Amazon.com posted quarterly profit substantially below expectations. Revenue was slightly below forecasts as well, and the shares came under immediate pressure despite the highest-ever quarterly profit ever posted by the online retail giant.

Facebook extended Thursday's stellar gains to hit a record intraday high.

In economic news, the advance read on the fourth-quarter showed U.S.GDP increased at a 0.7% annual rate, in-line with expectations but down sharply from the 2% rate in the third quarter. The economy grew 2.4% in 2015 after a similar expansion in 2014.

The employment cost index for the fourth quarter showed a rise of 0.6%, unchanged from the prior quarter.

Consumer sentiment was also due this morning.

Stocks extended gains after the Chicago PMI showed 55.6 in January after coming in at 42.9 in December. Consumer sentiment came in at 92.0 for January.

Overnight, the Bank of Japan announced a negative interest rate policy. Global equities climbed after the Bank of Japan's surprise announcement, with the Nikkei reversing mild losses to close up 2.8%. The

Shanghai
composite closed 3.1% higher. European stocks

traded about 1% higher late in Friday's session.

Prices for the 10-year Treasury gained, lowering yields to 1.94% from Thursday's 1.98%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices improved $1.04 a barrel to $34.26

U.S.

Gold prices fell $2.08 to $1,113.25

U.S.
an ounce.

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Source: Equities.com News (January 29, 2016 - 1:12 AM EST)

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