TSX higher to cap good week despite concerns about U.S.-Chinese relations

TORONTO — Canada’s main stock index capped a good week by moving slightly higher Friday amid escalating tensions between the U.S. and China.

The S&P/TSX composite index closed up 28.79 points at 14,913.64 and was nearly two per cent higher for the week.              

The gains south of the border were even stronger for the week, rising at least 3.2 per cent, despite a quiet day on U.S. markets ahead of the Memorial Day long weekend.

In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average was down 8.96 points at 24,465.16. The S&P 500 index was up 6.94 points at 2,955.45, while the Nasdaq composite was up 39.71 points at 9,324.59.

The run-up over the past week and more than 30 per cent climb since the late March lows is confirmation that investors think that a recovery is on its way despite concerns about a second wave of COVID-19 infections, said Kurt Reiman, chief investment strategist for BlackRock Canada.

“I would just say that the grand reopening sale in the stock market happened already several weeks ago and so most of the bargains have been pretty well picked over by now,” he said in an interview.

Market gains have coincided with falling earnings estimates for the end of 2020 and 2021.

“So there’s just not that much value that’s left in stocks given the run-up having happened alongside a sharp downward revision in earnings.”

A factor clouding the outlook is growing concerns about friction between the world’s two largest economies.

The U.S. senate is moving to delist Chinese companies from U.S. stock market indexes in retaliation to the start of the coronavirus in China.

The American government is also objecting to China’s move Friday to impose a new security law on Hong Kong following last year’s pro-democracy protests.

Also weighing on sentiment was news that China would drop its annual

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