Futures Pick up to End Disastrous Week

Canada’s main stock index futures were higher on Friday, with crude prices continuing to claw back some of their recent losses.

The TSX Composite Index popped 449.84 points, or 2.3%., to end Thursday’s session at 12,170.46

The Canadian dollar grabbed 1.29 cents early Friday to 70.24cents U.S. March futures advanced 2.1% early Friday.

The union representing flight attendants at Air Canada reports the airline will temporarily lay off more than 5,100 employees as it attempts to check the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

CIBC cut the target price on Northland Power to $30.00 from $33.00. CIBC raised the rating on Transalta Renewables to outperform from neutral

CIBC cut the target price on Atco Ltd. to $44.00 from $54.00. On the economic beat, Statistics Canada said retail sales rose for the third consecutive month, up 0.4% to $52.0 billion in January.

The agency acknowledges, while the impacts of the coronavirus on the retail trade sector will be more noticeable in subsequent months, respondent comments for February note that business activities have been impacted.

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange recovered 14.87 points, or 4.4%, Thursday to 353.67.

ON WALLSTREET

U.S. stock futures jumped on Friday, pointing to a second day of gains. NASDAQ futures hit ‘limit up’ levels on exchanges.

Futures for Dow Jones Industrials gathered 472 points, or 2.4%, early Friday to 20,347. Futures for the S&P 500 gained 46.75 points, or 2%, at 2,435.75.

Futures for the NASDAQ Composite jumped 229.75 points, on 3.2%, to 7,503.25, and were “limit up” earlier in the session, meaning no trades could take place above those levels.

The Dow entered Friday’s session down 13.4% for the week and was on pace for its biggest one-week fall since October 2008, when it slid 18.2%. The S&P 500 was down more than 11% week to date after dropping 11.5% last week. The NASDAQ was down 9.2% through Thursday’s close.

Tech shares are bouncing as investors bet the sector can weather a recession. Shares of Microsoft were up more than 6% in pre-market trading.

Also, California issued a statewide order to “stay at home” for its residents, the kind of drastic measures investors have been hoping for to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus and reduce the long-term economic damage.

Overseas, in Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index surged 5.1%, while in Japan, markets were shuttered for holiday.

Oil prices added 38 cents to $25.60 U.S. a barrel. Gold prices zoomed $26.50 to $1,505.90 U.S. an ounce.

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