Market numbers: December 24, 2009

By Staff | December 24, 2009 | Last updated on December 24, 2009
4 min read
| North American markets | International markets | Bonds | Currency | Commodities |

The Toronto stock market held on to a modest gain Thursday as U.S. economic data raised hopes that the economic rebound is on track, while rising oil and metal prices lifted commodity stocks.

The S&P/TSX composite index was off earlier highs but still ahead 28.9 points at 11,687.5.

A report from the U.S. Commerce Department showed the manufacturing sector is improving even as orders to U.S. factories for big-ticket durable goods increased less than expected in November, rising just 0.2%. However, excluding volatile transportation orders, durable goods orders rose 2% compared with October, double the average estimate of economists.

And the U.S. Labour Department said the number of new claims for unemployment benefits fell to 452,000 last week, down 28,000 from the previous week, providing the latest sign the job market is gradually improving. It was the best figure since September 2008, before the credit crisis peaked.

"It’s given traders what they wanted going into the end of the year and that is confirmation that the economic recovery is real,” said Andrew Pyle, investment adviser with ScotiaMcLeod in Peterborough, Ont.

"And if anything, (the recovery) is building enough momentum that it’s starting to be reflected even in those lagging indicators like employment, which is obviously what the jobless claims figures are. And if the lagging indicators are also turning positive, then that really is confirmation that we have turned a corner.”

However, Pyle added that there’s still a lot of uncertainty in 2010 as to what happens when massive stimulus spending by governments is taken off the table.

Thursday’s session is a short one, with markets in Toronto and New York closing at 1 p.m. EST.

The TSX reopens Tuesday while Wall Street is open for trading on Monday.

The Canadian dollar was up 0.02 of a cent at 95.4 cents US following a gain of 0.85 of a cent on Wednesday.

The energy sector rose 0.36 % as oil prices rose slightly after running ahead more than US$2 a barrel Wednesday on a report showing lower crude inventories in the United States. The February crude contract on the New York Mercantile Exchange gained 31 cents to US$76.98 a barrel. EnCana Corp. (TSX:ECA) advanced 45 cents to $34.30.

The financial and industrial sectors both rose about 0.3 %.

The February gold contract on the Nymex rose $7.20 to US$1,101.20 an ounce.

The gold sector was ahead 0.28 % as Goldcorp Inc. (TSX:G) said it’s raising its offer for Canplats Resources Corp. to the equivalent of C$254 million, which matches a rival bid from Minera Penmont. Goldcorp said that its agreement to match the rival offer effectively extinguishes the Penmont offer. Canplats’ main focus is the development of the Camino Rojo discovery in Mexico. Goldcorp shares were ahead 51 cents to $42.65 while Canplats shares were up 10 cents to $4.95, after surging more than 50 % on Wednesday.

The base metals sector was flat as March copper added four cents to US$3.25 a pound but HudBay Minerals (TSX:HBM) climbed 16 cents to $13.39.

The TSX Venture Exchange was ahead 12.07 points to 1,462.72.

New York markets also advanced, with the Dow Jones industrial average ahead 42.8 points to 10,509.3.

The Nasdaq composite index rose 10.17 points to 2,279.81 while the S&P 500 index gained 3.95 points to 1,124.55.

In other corporate news, the income fund that’s behind most of Canada’s KFC chicken restaurants is selling a Toronto plant that supplied its outlets and other customers with salads. Priszm Income Fund (TSX:QSR.UN) says it expects to sell its Sequel food processing facility for $11.5 million. Funds from the sale will be used to upgrade 75 of Priszm’s KFC restaurants. Priszm units rose nine cents to 98 cents.

Earlier Asian markets shrugged off a lacklustre performance on Wall Street to move higher Thursday amid expectations China will maintain a loose monetary policy.

China’s Shanghai Composite Index jumped 2.6 %, and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng climbed 0.9 %.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 stock average rose to a fresh three-month high as the yen’s recent weakness lifted exporters amid thin Christmas-season trade. The index gained 1.5 %.

London’s FTSE 100 index rose 0.56 % while the Paris CAC 40 added 0.05 %.

(The Canadian Press)

North American markets Back to Top
Open Change YTD
Dow Jones 10,509.97 +43.53 or +0.42% +19.75%
S&P 500 1,124.81 +4.22 or +0.38% +24.53%
NASDAQ 2,280.55 +10.91 or +0.48% +44.61%
TSX Composite 11,700.33 +41.63 or +0.36% +30.18%

International markets Back to Top
Open Change YTD
Nikkei 10,536.92 +158.89 or 1.53% +18.93%
Hang Seng 21,517.00 +188.26 or +0.88% +49.55%
SENSEX 17,360.61 +129.50 or +0.75% +79.95%
FTSE 100 5,402.41 +30.03 or +0.56% +21.84%
CAC 40 3,912.73 +1.98 or +0.05% +21.59%
DAX 5,957.44 +11.75 or +0.20% +23.85%

Bonds Back to Top
Bonds $Current $Previous %Yield
Cdn. 10-year bond 101.30 101.94 3.59
Cdn. 30-year bond 115.45 115.20 4.06
U.S. 10-year bond 96.68 96.94 3.78
U.S. 30-year bond 96.64 96.25 4.65

Currency Back to Top
BoC Close Today Previous
Canadian $ 0.9540 0.9538
US $ 1.0482 1.0484

Euro Spot Rate Today Previous
Canadian $ 0.6636 0.6659
Euro 1.5069 1.5018

Commodities Back to Top
Gold AM PM
London Gold Fix ($US) $ 1104.50 NA

Oil Open Change
WTI Crude Future (US) $77.07 +$0.40 or +0.52%

(12/24/09) staff


The staff of have been covering news for financial advisors since 1998.