September 27th, 2013 Business & Market Update

Seeing some weakness in Japan overnight regardless of the fact that inflation accelerated at the fastest pace in September in the past two years.  China was a little stronger on no real news.

Europe is lower trading on the Debt Ceiling impasse, despite economic confidence in the region moving to a 2 year high.  Markets there are off about a quarter point.  Our former BOC leader Mark Carney, now head of the Bank of England suggested that continued positive recovery in the UK would suggest no new stimulus is necessary at this time.  UK markets are off about three quarters of point on the news.

Moving to the US traders continue to square books for the weekend in regard to the Debt Ceiling issue causing futures to decline this morning by about a third of a point.  In my view it is still short term noise that will be dealt with, maybe not over the weekend or on Monday but a solution will come and we will move on.  Opportunities will be apparent based on this short term positioning and we will take advantage of them should they fit into my mandates.  Interestingly, over the past 25 years, the US government has “shut down” 17 times for varying periods and the response once agreement was made was an average increase in capital markets over the next month of around 0.7%.  I have added a piece this morning from our US Strategist, Tony Dwyer to provide some insight into the big picture.  We are also seeing bonds rally this morning as money goes to safe asset with 10 year yields falling to 2.63% in the US and 2.56% in Canada.

The data that I am more interested in is the Employment numbers for September that will be released next Friday.

Canadian markets are following the US lead down about a quarter point.

Gold is higher by 12.00 to 1336 on a weaker US dollar, oil is off slightly to 102.39 and the loonie is virtually flat at 96.9.

Lastly, whether you agree with the Keystone Pipeline or not, I did find it somewhat refreshing to see our Prime Minister call out the US government yesterday suggesting that we would not take no for an answer.  It was a direct shot at the Obama government which in my opinion needs to happen more often, but that’s for another day.

Kenneth A. Dick, BA, CIM, CFP, FCSI

Branch Manager & Portfolio Manager | Independent Wealth Management

Canaccord Genuity Wealth Management

July 29th, 2013 Business & Market Update

A very busy week this week as the earnings reports continue to come at a fast pace, the FOMC meets again Tuesday and Wed with a statement set for release on Wed afternoon and Friday we get the July Employment numbers our of the US.

Overnight in Asia, the Yen was once again stronger and more concern over a slowing Chinese economy caused Japan to drop 3.5% and China 1.75%.

Europe however is higher at midday as Italy has started to recover at a faster pace and should see positive GDP in fiscal 2014.  Markets are trading higher by about a third of a point.

US futures are down about a fifth of a point on no real news as markets wait for the Fed and the employment number later in the week.  Canadian futures are flat this morning.

Gold is trading higher on the weaker dollar this morning up 10.00 to 1337.00, oil is higher by 38 cents to 105.09 and the loonie is flat at 97.33.

On the earnings front, mandate companies, Arc Resources, Air Castle and Eastman Chemical are all announcing results after the market closes this evening.  I will provide the results in tomorrows blog.

A couple of big Canadian companies are in the news today.  The US President stated this weekend that the job creation numbers that have been estimated for the creation and servicing of the Keystone Pipeline project will be about a tenth of what was originally estimated.  Where he got the numbers from has not been divulged, however I am sure there will be much more on this in the days to come.  TransCanada for their part has suggested that a $7.6bn project that spans the continental US would create and sustain more than 20000 jobs which they feel is a conservative estimate.

Lastly, the Hudson’s Bay Company today announced a deal to buy Saks the big US high end retailer for about $2.6bn.  The deal, while accretive is an expensive one for HBC and the financing is being done in a number of different ways through private investment, debt and equity.  The company also announced it will be reducing its dividend by about half to help pay for the deal.

Kenneth A. Dick, BA, CIM, CFP, FCSI

Branch Manager & Portfolio Manager | Independent Wealth Management

Canaccord Genuity Wealth Management

May 13th, 2013 Market Update

This morning in Asia, Chinese Factory Output numbers were released and they were weaker than expected, which took the Chinese markets lower overnight by about a half a point.  Japan, however rose another 1.5% taking the market there to another near term high.

In Europe, the Chinese news filtered through the markets there and has the Euro Stoxx Index down about a quarter point at midday.

In the US April Retail Sales numbers came in at 0.1% vs. estimates of minus 0.3%, which was a nice upside surprise.  Retail Sales at 30% of consumer spending is an important contributor to growth in the economy and the upside surprise has caused futures to trim earlier losses to a virtual flat open.

US dollar strength is causing gold, oil and the loonie to fall this morning.  Gold is off a quarter point to 1432, oil is off half a point to 95.66 and the loonie is trading up 5 basis points to 99.06.

Looking at Canada, it would seem that the Obama administration is unlikely to make a decision on the Canada-to-Nebraska Keystone XL pipeline until late this year as it painstakingly weighs the project’s impact on the environment and on energy security, a U.S. official and analysts said on Friday.  The delay continues to weigh on heavy oil producers in the west as the longer the pipeline is delayed the longer the pricing mechanism for heavy crude stays at a discount to West Texas and Brent crude.

Last but not least, tonight the Leafs are actually in a game seven match-up, the first in a long time and do have a chance to win!  For as bazaar as it may seem if they do win, watch the sky for the blue moon later in the evening!

Kenneth A. Dick, BA, CIM, CFP, FCSI

Branch Manager & Portfolio Manager | Independent Wealth Management

Canaccord Genuity Wealth Management