Toronto stock mar­ket caps seven ses­sion los­ing streak on higher oil price

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - BUSINESS -

Higher oil prices pro­pelled the Toronto Stock Ex­change to a stronger fin­ish on Tues­day as most sec­tors gained some trac­tion, end­ing seven con­sec­u­tive ses­sions of de­clines.

The S&P/TSX com­pos­ite in­dex rose 75.99 points to 14,077.36, while the Cana­dian dol­lar gained 0.7 of a cent at 77.36 cents US.

Driv­ing the mar­ket higher was the TSX en­ergy sec­tor, which rose two per cent as the Septem­ber con­tract for crude oil gained 59 cents to US$47.98 on the New York Mer­can­tile Ex­change.

It was the first time in five days that oil fu­tures moved up, driven by the an­tic­i­pa­tion that weekly crude in­ven­to­ries could show a de­cline when the fig­ures are re­leased on Wed­nes­day.

The Septem­ber nat­u­ral gas con­tract gained 2.8 cents to US$2.816

Gains on the TSX marked a slight re­prieve for Canada’s main in­dex, which has taken a drub­bing in re­cent months amid a drop in oil prices and a ques­tion­able econ­omy.

“The TSX is very lop­sided right now,” said Craig Jerusalim, port­fo­lio man­ager at CIBC As­set Man­age­ment Inc.

En­ergy and ma­te­ri­als stocks have been squeezed while health care, tech­nol­ogy and con­sumeror­i­ented com­pa­nies have fared bet­ter, he added.

“When I parse through the quar­terly earn­ings I’ve no­ticed that com­pa­nies fo­cused on the con­sumer are ac­tu­ally sur­pris­ing to the up­side,” Jerusalim said, point­ing to earn­ings from Tim Hor­tons owner Restau­rant Brands (TSX:QSR) and U.S. video stream­ing ser­vice Net­flix as two re­cent ex­am­ples of com­pa­nies that sur­passed an­a­lyst ex­pec­ta­tions.

On Tues­day, WestJet (TSX:WJA) met an­a­lyst ex­pec­ta­tions with its sec­ond-quar­ter fi­nan­cial re­sults, which were helped by lower fuel prices and more trav­ellers. The com­pany posted a profit of C$61.6 mil­lion ver­sus C$51.8 mil­lion in the same pe­riod last year.

Shares of WestJet fell nearly four per cent to C$21.83 af­ter the re­sults were re­leased.

Gold prices slipped 20 cents to US$1,096.20 an ounce as traders awaited any signs from the U.S. Fed­eral Re­serve’s two-day mone­tary pol­icy meet­ing on the tim­ing of an ex­pected in­ter­est rate hike.

Mean­while on Wall Street, in­vestors found rea­son to cel­e­brate from a slate of pos­i­tive re­sults from U.S. com­pa­nies.

The Dow Jones in­dus­trial av­er­age gained 189.68 points at 17,630.27, while the Nasdaq added 49.43 points at 5,089.21 and the S&P 500 climbed 25.61 points to 2,093.25.

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