(Bloomberg) – Canadian stocks rose on Friday, capping the largest week-long increase since January 2009 despite a record drop in jobs in the country and a further increase in unemployment claims in the United States.
Investors have instead focused on another dose of economic support south of the border.
The S & P / TSX Composite Index climbed 1.7% on Thursday, bringing the weekly gain to 9.5%, the largest since January 2009, even as the Easter holidays interrupted it one day. Materials, health care and consumer discretionary were the best performing sectors.
The rally should be watched closely as there are signs that another step down is possible, according to Mark Stacey, co-director of investments at AGF Investments Inc. “If or when a new wave of” bad news ” strikes, the market rebound could prove fragile, “he said in a blog post.
The Federal Reserve has announced another round of steps that will provide up to $ 2.3 trillion in additional assistance. These measures will allow the Fed to help small and medium-sized businesses as well as state and local governments. Oil fell, reversing earlier gains, as investors saw a proposal to restrict OPEC + supply as insufficient to offset estimates of the destruction of demand from the Covid-19 epidemic.
Canada’s labor market experienced a historic slump in March due to the coronavirus pandemic. Employment fell 1.01 million from the previous month, the largest drop in records since 1976, Statistics Canada said. However, the loonie ignored the report. The Canadian dollar rose 0.3% to C $ 1.3969 per US dollar, while 10-year government bond yields fell about 6 basis points to 0.763%.
Gold and silver prices rebounded as the safe haven asset continued to be in demand, with investors weighing the economic fallout from the coronavirus and further aid from governments. Friday’s rising prices helped the precious metal miners. Spot gold rose 2.1% to $ 1,681.50 an ounce.
Meanwhile, investors can take comfort in the fact that this volatile market may have created the opportunity to redeploy cash to diversify their portfolio, said Stacey. “The recent market panic has proven that there is never a bad time to diversify a portfolio better, and could now prove to be very good,” he said.
Barrick Gold Inc. contributed the most to the index, increasing 10% as the price of gold rose. MTY Food Group Inc. posted the largest increase, up 26%, especially since February. 2004 Canadian National was the biggest drag on the index, down 1.6%.
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