After drifting down in early trades, the Canadian stock market emerged into positive territory Friday morning, as healthcare and energy shares rebounded after recent setback.
The mood in the market is cautious amid a lack of positive triggers. While optimism about additional economic stimulus in the U.S., and hopes about swifter economic recovery are supporting the market, weak economic data and some disappointing earnings reports are weighing on stocks.
The benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index, which slipped to 18,335.83, rose to 18,428.90 before paring some gains and dropping to 18,400.23, was up 21.87 points or 0.12% at 18,414.86 a little while ago.
The Capped Healthcare Index is up 3.4%. Aphria Inc. (APHA.TO) is soaring nearly 11%, Bausch Health Companies (BHC.TO) is rising 6% and Canopy Growth Corporation (WEED.TO) is up 3.6%.
The Capped Energy Index is up by about 1.5%. PrairieSky Royalty (PSK.TO) is rising 5.5%, Vermilion Energy (VET.TO) is gaining 3.1% and Tourmaline Oil Corp (TOU.TO) is up 2.7%, while Crescent Point Energy (CPG.TO), Whitecap Resources (WCP.TO) and Cenovus Energy (CVE.TO) are up 2 to 2.6%. Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ.TO) is advancing 1.4%.
Canadian Pacific Railway (CP.TO), Canadian National Railway (CNR.TO), Docebo Inc. (DCBO.TO) and Precision Drilling Corp (PD.TO) are among the prominent gainers from other sectors.
Enbridge Inc. (ENB.TO) reported adjusted earnings of $4.9 billion or $2.42 per common share for full-year 2020, compared with $5.3 billion or $2.65 per common share in 2019. The stock is down by about 1.4%.
Fortis Inc. (FTS.TO) reported fourth quarter net earnings of C$331 million, down from C$346 million in the prior-year quarter. On an adjusted basis, net earnings attributable to common equity shareholders were C$302 million or C$0.69 per share, compared to C$277 million or C$0.62 per share in the year-ago quarter. The stock is down nearly 0.5%.
In economic news, Statistics Canada said the industrial product price index in Canada rose 1.9% month-over-month in January of 2021, following an upwardly revised 1.6% increase in December. The index rose 3.8% year-on-year in January of 2021, the biggest increase since October of 2018, according to a preliminary estimate.
Wholesale sales in Canada declined 1.3% month-over-month to C$ 66.5 billion in December of 2020, slightly less than initial estimates of a 1.7% drop.
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