Markets in Toronto survived another dipsy-doodle day Thursday, but managed to find its balance, due mostly to strength in consumer staple and resource stocks.
TSX Composite index gained 36.48 points to close Thursday at 20,183.72
The Canadian dollar dipped 0.50 cents to 79.40 cents U.S.
Among consumer staples, Alimentation Couche-Tard was the champion, with a gain of $2.44, or 5.3%, to $48.85, while Loblaw Companies surged 92 cents, or 1.2%, to $79.18.
Gold stocks also prospered, with B2Gold up 23 cents, or 4.5%, to $5.34, while Yamana Gold strengthened 18 cents, or 3.4%, to $5.50.
In other resource stocks, Hudbay Minerals gained 29 cents, or 3.4%, to $8.79, while Franco-Nevada jumped $5.53, or 3%, to $193.13.
Energy stocks, however, faltered, as MEG Energy docked 48 cents, or 5.6%, to $8.13, while Crescent Point Energy dropped 14 cents, or 3%, to $4.50.
Health-care faded, too, as Tilray doffed 68 cents, or 3.6%, to $18.14, while Aurora Cannabis moved lower 19 cents, or 2%, to $9.21.
Among communiucations issues, Corus shed 10 cents, or 1.7%, to $5.91, while Cogeco Communications lost $1.47, or 1.2%, to $120.43.
On the economic slate, the Canadian Real Estate Association reported national home sales declined by 8.4% on a month-over-month basis in June. Actual (not seasonally adjusted) activity was up 13.6% year-over-year.
The TSX Venture Exchange stumbled 9.29 points, or 1%, to 928.53.
Seven of the 12 TSX subgroups were positive, with consumer staples charging ahead 1.7%, gold brighter by 1.5%, and materials stronger by 0.8%.
The five laggards were weighed most by energy, falling 1.6%, health-care, off 1.5%, and communications, off 0.5%.
The S&P 500 dipped on Thursday even as second-quarter earnings results continued to beat expectations.
The Dow Jones Industrials moved forward 53.79 points to finish the session Thursday at 34,987.02
The S&P 500 slipped 14.27 points to 4,360.03
The NASDAQ plummeted 101.82 points to 14,543.13.
Morgan Stanley’s second-quarter earnings report topped analysts’ expectations Thursday morning, yet its shares closed just 0.18% higher. The bank’s stock was up 35% this year going into the results.
For the 18 S&P 500 companies that beat analyst estimates for second-quarter earnings this week, the average earnings-per-share result was 18% higher than expected. But those companies saw their shares fall 0.58% on average after reporting.
Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell on Thursday maintained the central bank will continue to evaluate the economic recovery before changing its accommodating monetary policies. The Fed chair spoke before the Senate banking panel in a second day of testimony before Congress.
On the economic beat, initial jobless claims for the week ending July 10 totaled 360,000, a new pandemic-era low, as expected by economists.
Prices for 10-Year Treasurys gained ground, lowering yields to 1.30% from Wednesday’s 1.35%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.
Oil prices fell $1.57 to $71.56 U.S. a barrel.
Gold prices gained $5.30 to $1,830.30 U.S. an ounce.