(RTTNews.com) - After a positive start and a subsequent fall into negative territory, the Canadian market regained some lost ground Wednesday morning amid cautious moves by investors.
Investors, reacting to the latest batch of U.S. and Canadian economic data, are looking ahead to the Federal Reserve's monetary policy announcement, due later in the day.
According to data released by Statistics Canada, average weekly earnings of Canadians in non-farm jobs came in at $1.012 in November, little changed from the previous month. Compared to November 2017, earnings were up 2%.
Energy shares are finding support on higher crude oil prices. Materials shares are turning in a mixed performance.
Consumer staples and consumer discretionary shares are mostly lower, while the healthcare sector is up again, riding on gains in cannabis stocks.
The benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index, which declined to a low of 15,418.64 from an early high of 15,493.36, is currently down 6.80 points, or 0.04%, at 15,456.34,
Among bank stocks, Bank of Montreal (BMO.TO), Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS.TO), Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CM.TO) and National Bank of Canada (NA.TO) are up 0.3% to 5%, while Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO) and Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD.TO) are up marginally.
Among the stocks in the healthcare sector, Aurora Cannabis (ACB.TO) is gaining 2%, Aphria (APHA.TO) is rising 5.4%, Canopy Growth Corporation (WEED.TO) is surging up 3.75%, Cronos Group (CRON.TO) is up 3.5% and Hexo Corp. (HEXO.TO) is advancing 1.3%.
Precision Drilling Corporation (PD.TO) is up as much as 12% after the company announced plans for capital expenditure, updates on debt repayments, strategies for 2019 and expected goodwill impairment at year-end 2018.
Cenovus Energy (CVE.TO), BayTex Energy Corp. (BTE.TO), Crescent Point Energy (CPG.TO), Encana Corporation (ECA.TO) and MEG Energy (MEG.TO) are up with sharp to moderate gains.
The U.S. market is notably higher, reacting positively to earnings reports from Boeing and Apple, and data showing a better than expected better than expected jump in private sector employment in January.
The Dow is up 1.35%, the S&P 500 is rising 0.8% and the Nasdaq is climbing nearly 1%.
Among major European markets, the U.K. and France are up 1.4% and 0.8%, respectively, while the German market is down by about 0.4%.
In commodities, crude oil futures for March are gaining $1.20, or 2.25%, at $54.51 a barrel.
Gold futures for February are up $1.30, or 0.1%, at $1,310.20 an ounce.
Silver futures for March are up $0.104, or 0.66%, at $15.943 an ounce, while Copper futures for March are gaining $0.030, or 1.14%, at $2.755 per pound.
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