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Key indexes on both sides of the border rose at Thursday’s opening bell with tech shares climbing in the wake of chipmaker Nvidia’s stellar quarter and forecast.

At 9:30 a.m. ET, the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index was up 115.03 points, or 0.54 per cent, at 21,287.41.

In the U.S., the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 232.95 points, or 0.60 per cent, at the open to 38,845.19.

The S&P 500 opened higher by 57.03 points, or 1.14 per cent, at 5,038.83, while the Nasdaq Composite gained 323.61 points, or 2.08 per cent, to 15,904.48 at the opening bell.

Nvidia NVDA-Q shares were up more than 15 per cent in early trading after the chipmaker’s closely watch earnings report topped Wall Street estimates. Markets had been paying particular attention to Nvidia’s latest earnings, looking for clues about demand for AI chips. In reporting its latest results, Nvidia, which has seen its stock surge over the past year, forecast first-quarter revenue growth of 233 per cent, topping Wall Street’s expectations of a 208 per cent increase.

“Nvidia was called the most important stock in the world earlier this week, and it does seem to have restored confidence in overall markets with this earnings release,” Kathleen Brooks, research director at XTB, said in a note.

“Overall, Nvidia results were important, but the commentary and forward guidance was more important for the direction of the stock,” she said. “These results put to bed fears about a future decline in revenue or a drop in market share as competitors catch up.”

In Canada, earnings also continue with results from grocery giant Loblaw Cos Ltd. Ahead of the opening bell, Loblaw reported adjusted earnings per share of $2.00 in the latest quarter, compared with analysts’ average estimate of $1.90, according to LSEG data.

Elsewhere, Suncor Energy topped analysts’ estimates in the most recent quarter, helped by higher production. The company posted adjusted operating earnings of $1.26 per share for the three months ended Dec. 31, compared with analysts’ average estimate of $1.05 per share, according to LSEG data. The results were released after the Wednesday’s closing bell.

Canadian investors also also got a snapshot on consumer spending during the holiday season with the release of December retail sales bay Statistics Canada. The agency said sales rose 0.9 per cent on a monthly basis. That was slightly ahead of economists’ forecasts of a 0.8-per-cent rise. Sales were up in five of nine subsectors. An early estimate suggests a decline of 0.4 per cent in January. That estimate is subject to revision.

Overseas, the pan-European STOXX 600 was up 0.59 per cent in morning trading. Britain’s FTSE 100 added 0.02 per cent. Germany’s DAX and France’s CAC 40 gained 1.08 per cent and 0.70 per cent, respectively.

In Asia, Japan’s Nikkei spiked 2.19 per cent to close above 39,000 and surpass the previous record high set in 1989. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng gained 1.45 per cent.


Crude prices were fairly steady with traders awaiting weekly U.S. inventory data later in the morning.

The day range on Brent was US$82.95 to US$83.48 in the early premarket period. The range on West Texas Intermediate was US$77.87 to US$78.39.

“Oil prices are upbeat,” Swissquote senior analyst Ipek Ozkardeskaya said in a note.

" [WTI] crude oil is trying to drill above the US$78-per-barrel level, a major Fibonacci resistance that distinguishes between the actual negative trend and a medium-term bullish reversal, while U.S. gasoline bulls are coughing back to life after more than six-month silence.”

Later in the session, markets will get weekly U.S. inventory numbers from the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

Late Wednesday, industry group American Petroleum Institute said crude stocks rose 7.17 million barrels for the week ended Feb. 16. Gasoline inventories also advanced while distillate fuel stocks decline.

Reuters reports that U.S. crude inventories have climbed amid outages at large refineries that have left utilization rates at the lowest level in two years, though the plants are resuming output.

In other commodities, spot gold was up 0.3 per cent at US$2,031.7 per ounce, as of early Thursday morning, after hitting its highest since Feb. 9 on Wednesday. U.S. gold futures edged 0.3-per-cent higher to US$2,041.2 per ounce.


The Canadian dollar was higher, buoyed by positive global risk sentiment, while its U.S. counterpart fell against a group of world currencies.

The day range on the loonie was 74.03 US cents to 74.41 US cents in the early premarket period. The Canadian dollar is up about 0.08 per cent over the past five days.

On world markets, the U.S. dollar index was down 0.30 per cent at 103.70. The index is headed for a weekly decline of roughly 0.6 per cent. If that happens, it would be the first weekly fall of 2024.

The euro was up 0.31 per cent at US$1.0852. Britain’s pound gained 0.28 per cent to US$1.2673.

In bonds, the yield on the U.S. 10-year note was lower at 4.307 per cent.

More company news

Teck Resources reported fourth-quarter profit above market estimates on Thursday, helped by an increase in steelmaking coal sales and strong copper prices. The company reported an adjusted profit of $1.40 per share for the three months ended Dec. 31, compared to analysts’ estimate of $1.33 per share, according to LSEG data. Copper prices rose 2.1% in 2023 on healthy demand from China. The metal is expected to see the largest immediate price boost among commodities from potential U.S. Federal Reserve interest rate cuts, analysts at Goldman Sachs said. -Reuters

Quebecor Inc. raised its quarterly dividend as it reported its fourth-quarter profit and revenue rose compared with a year ago. The company says it will pay a quarterly dividend of 32.5 cents per share, up from 30 cents. The increased payment came as Quebecor says it earned net income attributable to shareholders of $146.2-million or 63 cents per share for the quarter ended Dec. 31, up from $142.5-million or 62 cents per share in the last three months of 2022. Revenue totalled $1.50-billion for the quarter, up from $1.19-billion a year earlier. -The Canadian Press

Newmont Corp, the world’s largest gold miner, said on Thursday it intends to divest six non-core assets, including its Eleonore mine in Quebec and its Porcupine mine in Ontario, along with two non-core projects including the Coffee mine in Yukon and Newcrest’s Havieron mine in Western Australia. -Reuters

U.S. energy firm Chord Energy said on Wednesday that it would acquire Canada’s Enerplus, creating a combined entity with an enterprise value of US$11-billion. Under the terms of the agreement, Enerplus shareholders will receive 0.10125 shares of Chord common stock and US$1.84 in cash for each common share of Enerplus owned at closing. Chord said it would issue about 20.7 million shares of its common stock. The combined company is expected to be a premier operator in the Williston Basin, with approximately 1.3 million net acres. -Reuters

Economic news

(8:30 a.m. ET) Canadian retail sales for December.

(8:30 a.m. ET) U.S. initial jobless claims for week of Feb. 17.

(9:45 a.m. ET) U.S. S&P Global PMIs for February.

(10 a.m. ET) U.S. existing home sales for January.

Also: B.C. budget

With Reuters and The Canadian Press

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