Before the bell: What every Canadian investor needs to know today

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Wall Street futures rose slightly on Tuesday after the break from the previous session. Major European markets were little changed in morning trading, with rising coronavirus infections around the world weighing on sentiment. Futures on the TSX were slightly firmer with the rise in crude prices.

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Futures linked to major US indices edged up ahead of the North American opening after weaker performance in the first session of the week. The US indices ended a winning streak on Monday, with the S&P 500 slipping 0.66% and the Dow Jones dropping nearly 90 points. The Nasdaq closed 1.25% due to weakness from big tech names like Facebook and Amazon. The S & P / TSX Composite Index closed more than 100 points lower.

“For a while stocks were said to look noble, so a downside wasn’t much of a surprise,” CMC Markets analyst David Madden said in an early note.

“In recent sessions, speculation that President-elect Joe Biden will craft new stimulus packages has made headlines. News about vaccines also contributes to optimistic sentiment. Inventories on both sides of the Atlantic fell yesterday, but traders have not lost sight of the Biden and vaccination rollout stories.

In Washington, Democrats on Monday introduced both a motion calling on Vice President Mike Pence to strip Mr. Trump of his powers under the 25th Amendment to the Constitution as well as a single article of impeachment, for “incitement to the ‘insurrection”.

The rise in coronavirus infections and associated lockdowns are also dampening investor enthusiasm. On Tuesday, the British Minister of Police warned that the British public must adhere to strict rules to prevent the spread of COVID-19 or the government could adopt even stricter measures. In that country, the Ontario government is expected to impose tighter restrictions on Tuesday, even as the province faces a lockdown imposed at the end of December.

On the corporate side, Corus Entertainment Inc. reported last quarter earnings per share of 37 cents, unchanged from the same period a year earlier. First-quarter revenue was $ 420.4 million, down about 10% from a year ago, but ahead of the $ 417.3 million forecast by analysts.

Overseas, major European markets were largely stable, with the pan-European STOXX 600 index increasing 0.14 percent. Britain’s FTSE 100 slipped 0.37%. The German DAX rose 0.05% while the French CAC 40 slipped 0.07%.

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In Asia, Japan’s Nikkei rose 0.09%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng gained 1.32 percent. China’s Shanghai Composite Index rose 2.18 percent.

Basic products

Crude prices rose as Brent surpassed US $ 56 a barrel, supported by a Saudi Arabia move to tighten supply.

The day range on Brent is from US $ 55.51 to US $ 56.75. The range for West Texas Intermediate is US $ 52.07 to US $ 53.26.

Tuesday’s gains followed a slight pullback earlier in the week and came after Saudi Arabia said it would cut an additional one million barrels per day in February and March to avoid an increase in inventories.

“Oil is not an asset to stay idle, and despite stupid speculation the rally is exhausted, nothing could be further from the truth given the long vaccine trail paved with tons of stimulus,” said the Axi’s Chief Global Market Strategist Stephen Innes.

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“This hardly signals exhaustion; rather, it should mean the running of the bulls. ”

Later today, traders will also receive the first of two weekly US inventory reports when the American Petroleum Institute releases its latest figures.

Analysts expect the report to show US stocks fell for the fifth straight week. Analysts in a Reuters poll expect crude inventories to fall by 2.7 million barrels. More official figures are expected Wednesday by the US Energy Information Administration.

The gains, however, have been tempered somewhat by lingering concern over COVID-19-related restrictions around the world. Reuters reports that Chinese authorities on Tuesday introduced new borders around Beijing, locking up 4.9 million residents.

In other commodities, gold rose, rebounding after hitting a six-week low on Monday.

Spot gold rose 0.8% to US $ 1,860.10 an ounce. On Monday, prices hit their lowest level since December 2. US gold futures rose 0.5 percent to US $ 1,860.

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“The market appears to have tried to price the bullish seasonality of the yellow metal a bit too quickly in January, leaving room to recover once the sell-off wears off,” Mr. Innes said.

Devises

The Canadian dollar strengthened as crude prices advanced and risk sentiment improved while its US counterpart held onto recent gains.

The daily range of the loonie is from 78.18 US cents to 78.53 US cents.

No major Canadian economic report was expected Tuesday.

“We are not convinced the CAD can continue to push higher,” said Shaun Osborne, chief foreign exchange strategist at Scotiabank.

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“With no release of major national data, external drivers remain more influential for DAC at this point,” he said.

In global markets, the US dollar index, which measures it against a basket of currencies, was the latest at 90.489, unchanged that day, according to Reuters figures. It rebounded from 89.206 lows seen last week.

Against the euro, the US dollar held steady at $ 1.2153.

The Australian and New Zealand dollars gained around 0.3 percent against the greenback, supported by a growing appetite for riskier assets.

Bitcoin stabilized at US $ 36,500 after Monday’s drop. The cryptocurrency rally has weakened since it hit a record high of $ 42,000 on January 8.

More company news

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Intel Corp. plans to use Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co to make a second-generation discrete graphics chip for personal computers that it hopes will help it fight the rise of Nvidia Corp, two sources close to Reuters told Reuters folder. The chip, known as “DG2,” will be manufactured on a new chip-making process at TSMC that has yet to be officially named, but is an improved version of its 7-nanometer process, the researchers said. two people familiar with the subject.

German car manufacturer Volkswagen said Tuesday that sales of its main brand fell 15% to 5.3 million vehicles in 2020 as the coronavirus outbreak and lockdowns imposed to limit infections hit car dealerships around the world. Volkswagen said it saw sales rebound in December compared to previous months, increasing 19.5% in Western Europe and 14.7% in North America. He added that demand for its electric models jumped 158% on the year, to 212,000 vehicles.

From Canada First Cobalt Corp announced on Tuesday that it had signed an agreement with Glencore and reached a provisional agreement with a unit of China Molybdenum Ltd for the supply of cobalt to the Democratic Republic of Congo. The deals come after First Cobalt last month secured C $ 10 million in government loans and grants to accelerate the start-up and expansion of North America’s first cobalt refinery in the Canadian province of Ontario .

Economic news

(10 a.m. ET) US Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey for November.

With Reuters and The Canadian Press

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