TORONTO — Canada’s main stock index advanced nearly 80 points Friday, offsetting much of Thursday’s triple-digit loss, on the back of strong earnings from a number of companies.
The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index advanced 79.66 points to 15,586.13, with gold and mining firms among the biggest gainers of the day.
Agnico Eagle Mines Ltd. (TSX:AEM) shares gained more than 10.5 per cent or $6.21 after the company outperformed analyst expectations in its first quarter. The results were released after markets closed Thursday.
“That’s a big driver today,” said Ian Scott, equity analyst at Manulife Asset Management.
He added that Detour Gold Corp. (TSX:DGC), which also posted its first quarter results after Thursday’s markets closed, helped boost the index. The gold producer’s shares rose nearly 13.5 per cent or $2.05.
Offsetting the gains, Saskatoon-based Cameco Corp. (TSX:CCO) shed $1.19 or 8.33 per cent after the uranium producer reported a bigger-than-expected loss in its first quarter.
In New York, markets ended lower after the U.S. Department of Commerce reported GDP grew by 0.7 per cent in the first three months of the year — its poorest performance for the quarter in three years.
The Dow Jones industrial average fell 40.82 points to 20,940.51, the S&P 500 index shed 4.57 points to 2,384.20, and the Nasdaq composite index lost 1.33 points to 6,047.61
“It’s just kind of taking a bit of the wind out of the sails, I think,” Scott said of the weak economic report.
But, he added, first quarter GDP reports generally come in weaker than the rest of the year.
Wall Street, however, was buoyed by strong earnings from technology firms. Shares of Google’s parent company Alphabet and Amazon rose 3.63 and 0.72 per cent, respectively, after their most recent quarterly earnings releases.
The Canadian dollar, meanwhile, declined 0.14 of a U.S. cent to 73.26 cents US in what Scott called “a tough environment for the Canadian dollar,” as the United States is ratcheting up its protectionist trade rhetoric.
In commodities, the June crude contract rose 36 cents to US$49.33 per barrel, while the June gold contract gained $2.40 to US$1,268.30 an ounce.
June natural gas gained 3.7 cents to about US$3.28 per mmBTU and July copper advanced about 1.5 cents to roughly US$2.61 a pound.