Canada’s main stock index inched higher at the open on Friday, as the nation added more jobs in August and the unemployment rate fell, adding to hopes of recovery as coronavirus-led curbs continue to ease.
The TSX stayed negative, giving back 39.44 points to begin the week’s last session at 16,409.45.
The Canadian dollar sank 0.47 cents to 76.18 cents U.S.
Cable operator Altice USA and Rogers Communications said on Thursday they will pursue deal talks for Cogeco Inc’s assets after a $10.3-billion bid was rejected by the Canadian telecom company’s board.
Cogeco stocks surged $1.69, or 1.8%, to $95.00, while shares in Rogers gained 13 cents to $56.87.
Scotiabank raised the rating on Titan Mining to sector perform from sector underperform, and the target price to $0.50 from $0.10. Titan shares dropped three cents, or 5.2%, to 55 cents.
On the economic beat, Statistics Canada reported the economy grew by 246,000 (or 1.4%) in August, compared with 419,000 (or 2.4%) in July. The unemployment rate fell 0.7 percentage points to 10.2% in August.
Combined with gains of 1.2 million in May and June, this brought employment to within 1.1 million (or 5.7%) of its pre-COVID February level.
Also, later on this morning, Western University’s IVEY School of Business’ Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) for August dropped to 67.8 from July’s 68.5, but surpassing the 60.6 reading in August 2019.
The TSX Venture Exchange dipped 1.48 points to 728.87.
Seven of the 12 TSX subgroups were negative in the first hour, with gold settling 2.6%, information technologies stumbling 2,1%, while materials lost 2%.
The five gainers were led by financials, richer by 1%, while industrials and communications each climbed 0.4%.
Stocks struggled to find their footing on Friday even after the release of solid U.S. jobs data as tech fell once again.
The Dow Jones Industrials moved ahead 45.62 points, to start off Friday at 28,338.35.
The S&P 500 fell 23.36 points to 3,431.70.
The NASDAQ Composite tumbled 598.34 points, or 5%, to 11,458.10.
Apple shares dropped 3.7% and Facebook slid 3.2%. Amazon and Netflix both fell more than 2% along with Alphabet. Microsoft slid 1.9%.
Both Tesla and Apple rallied recently after announcing stock splits.
To be sure, more beaten-down parts of the market rebounded Thursday and added to those gains Friday. Cruise operator Carnival advanced 2.6% on Friday. United Airlines rose about 1%.
On the economic beat, the U.S. Labor Department said the unemployment rate fell to 8.4% last month from 10.2% in July.
Economists polled by Dow Jones expected the rate to decline to 9.8%. As for overall jobs creation, employment in the U.S. grew by 1.37 million in August, topping an estimate of 1.32 million.
Bank stocks rose following the data release as Treasury yields climbed. Citigroup, Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase were all up at least 1.4%. Wells Fargo climbed 1%.
Prices for the 10-Year Treasury slid, raising yields to 0.68% from Thursday’s 0.64%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.
Oil prices fell 73 cents to $40.64 U.S. a barrel.
Gold prices skidded $3.70 to $1,934.10 U.S. an ounce.