Positive Open in Week's Final Session

Mar 15, 2019 (Baystreet.ca via COMTEX) —

Equities in Canada’s largest market opened higher on Friday, led by gains in material and financial sectors, with risk appetite revived by signs of progress in U.S.-China trade talks.

The S&P/TSX Composite Index gained 73.47 points to lead off Friday’s session at 16,161.02

The Canadian dollar subtracted 0.17 cents at 74.88 cents U.S.

Air Canada suspended its previous forecast for the first quarter and full year after Canada grounded Boeing’s 737 MAX jets following a deadly crash in Ethiopia on Sunday.

Shares in the Maple Leaf Airline dipped 55 cents, or 1.7%, to $31.34.

Canaccord Genuity raised the price target on Hexo Corp. to $10.00 from $7.50. Hexo shares picked up a nickel at $8.16.

CIBC cut the price target on Premium Brands Holdings to $72.00 from $82.00. Premium shares rocketed $1.74, or 2.5%, to $72.50.

CIBC raised the price target on WSP Global to $81 from $77. WSP shares gained $1.03, or 1.5%, to $71.53.

On the economic front, Statistics Canada said manufacturing sales increased 1.0% to $57.1 billion in January, following three consecutive monthly decreases.

Higher sales in the food as well as the electrical equipment, appliance and component industries were the main contributors to the gains in January.

Elsewhere, statistics released today by the Canadian Real Estate Association show national home sales plummeted 9.1% month-over-month in February. Actual (not seasonally-adjusted) activity was down 4.4% year-over-year.

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange regained 2.89 points to begin Friday at 623.07

All but one of the 12 TSX subgroups gained in the first hour Friday, with gold and materials each gaining 1%, while industrials were stronger by 0.6%.

Only consumer staples were negative, and only 0.1% at that.

ON WALLSTREET

The S&P 500 and NASDAQ Composite rose on Friday as investors cheered

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