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Weekly wrap, Sept. 1, 2017: Stocks advance, Nasdaq sets new record high
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By Fund Library News Wire  | Friday, September 01, 2017


By Mike Keerma

* Stocks make strong gains on the week.
* First Asset launches tech giants ETF.
* Hamilton Capital debuts mid-cap financial sector ETF.

Stock market made gains on the week, on lighter-than-normal volumes ahead of the Labour Day long weekend in both Canada and the U.S. Toronto’s S&P/TSX Composite Index advanced nearly 1% week over week, as Canada’s economy posted 4.5% quarter-over-quarter growth (or 3.7% annualized) in the April to June period, while the big banks reported estimate-beating earnings, helping boost the index’s weekly performance. U.S. stock markets surged, with the S&P 500 Composite Index gaining 1.4% on the week, while the Nasdaq Composite Index rose 2.7%, to close at yet another record high close, its 46th this year, as a softer-than-expected jobs report for August led to speculation that the Federal Reserve Board would cool on its hawkish tilt for a rate hike in December. Crude oil slid 1% on the week, while gold rose 2.7%.

Canada’s gross domestic product posted stronger-than-expected growth in the second quarter, led by retail sales, strong export numbers, and healthy business investment. The surge in second quarter GDP growth has some analysts now predicting a possible rate hike by the Bank of Canada as soon as this month instead of October as had been widely expected.

U.S. second quarter GDP growth was revised sharply upwards. New figures indicate that the economy grew at its strongest pace since the first quarter of 2015, posting an annualized growth rate of 3% in the second quarter of 2017. The GDP growth was buoyed by consumer spending and business investments. The August non-farm payroll report, however, was on the soft side, with 156,000 new jobs created, compared with 189,000 in July. The unemployment rate ticked up to 4.4% from 4.3% in July.

Shares of Toronto-Dominion Bank (TSX: TD) rose 4% on the week after the bank reported consensus estimate-beating fiscal third-quarter earnings of $2.77 billion ($1.46 per share), up 17% from the same period a year ago. The bank’s earnings topped of week of expectation-exceeding earnings reports from Royal Bank of Canada (TSX: RY) at $1.85 per share, Bank of Montreal (TSX: BMO) at $1.84 per share, Bank of Nova Scotia (TSX: BNS) at $1.66 per share, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (TSX: CM) at $3.61 per share, and National Bank of Canada (TSX: NA) at $2.61 per share.


* First Asset launches tech giants ETF. First Asset Investment Management debuted its Canadian-dollar hedged First Asset Tech Giants Covered Call ETF (TSX: TXF) along with an unhedged version trading under the symbol TXF.B. The ETF holds shares of 25 of the largest North American technology companies by market cap, aiming to minimize volatility and generate income with an actively managed covered call writing strategy. According to First Asset, no more than 25% of the portfolio’s securities will have call options written upon them at any given time.

* Hamilton Capital debuts mid-cap financial sector ETF. Hamilton Capital Partners announced that its new Hamilton Capital U.S. Mid-Cap Financials ETF (USD) (TSX: HFMU.U) will begin trading on Sept. 5. The fund, trading in U.S. dollars, holds an actively managed portfolio of mostly U.S. mid-cap financial services companies.

Check Fund Library’s Market Activity page regularly for active updates on key market indexes and commodities.

@FundLibrary – Follow Fund Library on Twitter for daily information and updates.


© 2017 by Fund Library. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part by any means without prior written permission is prohibited.

The foregoing is for general information purposes only and is the opinion of the writer. No guarantee of investment performance is made or implied. It is not intended to provide specific personalized advice including, without limitation, investment, financial, legal, accounting or tax advice.

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