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A roundup of some of the North American equities making moves in both directions

On the rise

Enbridge Inc. (ENB-T) was up after it said on Wednesday its Line 3 pipeline would be operational from Oct. 1, marking the completion of a long-delayed replacement project that would increase the capacity of crude deliveries from Canada to U.S. refineries.

Line 3, built in the 1960s, carries oil from Edmonton to Superior, Wisconsin, and was transporting less than it was designed for because of age and corrosion. The replacement project will allow Enbridge to roughly double its capacity to 760,000 barrels per day on the 1,765 kilometre-long pipeline.

The new 542-kilometre Minnesota segment of Line 3, which follows other segments already placed into service in Canada, North Dakota and Wisconsin, restores the full pipeline capacity to meet the energy needs of refineries in the Midwest.

Earlier this month, the company told shippers it would offer 620,000 barrels per day of crude capacity in October, and expects Line 3 will reach full capacity during the fourth quarter.

Line 3 is the first major Canadian oil pipeline expansion to be completed in more than five years. The last was Enbridge’s Alberta Clipper project, finished in 2015, and before that TC Energy’s Keystone project in 2010.

The replacement project was first proposed in 2014 but ran into regulatory delays, legal challenges and opposition from environmental groups and Native American tribes, particularly in Minnesota, which is the last section of the pipeline to be placed into service.

“After more than eight years of many people working together, extensive community engagement, and thorough environmental, regulatory and legal review, we are pleased that Line 3 is complete and will soon deliver the low cost and reliable energy that people depend on every day,” Chief Executive Al Monaco said in a statement

AGF Management Ltd. (AGF.B-T) rose on the back of better-than-anticipated third-quarter financial results.

Before the bell, the Toronto-based firm reported earnings per share of 21 cents, beating the Street’s forecast by 4 cents, as gross mutual fund sales jumped 61 per cent year-over-year to $790-million.

“As we head into the final months of 2021, we are well-positioned to execute against our strategic priorities and will aim to continue to gain momentum with a focus on increasing sales, evolving our client-base and looking for opportunities to diversify our business,” said president and CEO Kevin McCreadie.

Netflix Inc. (NFLX-Q) rose after announcing late Tuesday it has bought video game creator Night School Studio and rolled out five mobile gaming titles in select European markets, as it looks to diversify revenue sources amid intensifying competition in the streaming space.

Night School Studio, the company’s first gaming studio purchase, is best known for its debut game, Oxenfree, a supernatural teen thriller with an eerie soundtrack.

The studio’s games, which are available on Sony’s PlayStation, Microsoft’s Xbox, Nintendo Switch and PCs, will be the first non-mobile titles in the streaming giant’s newly created video game portfolio.

“Like our shows and films, these games will all be included as part of your Netflix membership — all with no ads and no in-app purchases,” the company said.

Netflix had mentioned its plans to enter gaming during its last quarterly earnings, as newer players including Disney+ and HBO Max have been rapidly gaining subscribers, intensifying competition in the streaming landscape.

Boeing Co. (BA-N) rose after it said 737 MAX test flight for China’s aviation regulator last month was successful and the planemaker hopes a two-year grounding will be lifted this year.

“It went off without a hitch,” Boeing China President Sherry Carbary said of the test flight, speaking on the sidelines of Airshow China, the country’s biggest air show.

Boeing working with the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) as it sifts through data and finalizes reports before deciding whether the plane can be returned to service, Ms. Carbary said.

The ban, which has been lifted in the West and several Asian countries, could be eased in China around November, people close to the matter have told Reuters.

“We are hopeful it will happen by the end of the year,” Ms. Carbary said, declining to be more specific. “It is up to CAAC. But I can tell you we are doing all we can to support them and we’re encouraged about how closely they are working with us.”

AstraZeneca PLC (AZN-Q) was up with the announcement it will take full control of Caelum Biosciences in a deal worth up to US$500-million, the drugmaker said on Wednesday, sharpening its focus on rare-disease drugs following its purchase of Alexion Pharmaceuticals.

The deal gives AstraZeneca access to another potentially lucrative rare disease drug that is undergoing late-stage trials and has a “fast track” status for regulatory review in the United States.

New Jersey-based Caelum will become part of AstraZeneca’s Alexion division, the rare diseases specialist it bought for US$39-billion earlier this year.

Alexion will pay US$150-million to buy the remaining stake it does not already own in Caelum and make future payments of up to US$350-million, depending on milestones achieved. Alexion took a minority stake in Caelum in 2019.

Caelum’s drug candidate aims to treat AL amyloidosis, a rare, life-threatening disease that damages the heart and kidneys and affects an estimated 20,000 people across six Western countries.

On the decline

Lightspeed Commerce Inc. (LSPD-T) shares fell 11.7 per cent after a short-seller expressed doubts about the company’s customer counts, revenue growth, and competitive position.

Spruce Point CEO Ben Axler declined to say how large the firm’s short position is, citing company policy and the lack of any regulation requiring he do so.

Lightspeed did not respond to the Globe’s requests for comment during Wednesday’s trading hours.

***

Micron Technology Inc. (MU-Q) slipped after the chipmaker forecast current-quarter revenue below analysts’ expectations and warned that shipments for its memory chips were set to dip in the near term.

The company makes both NAND memory chips that serve the data storage market and DRAM memory chips that are widely used in data centers, personal computers and other devices.

Micron, one of the world’s biggest memory chip suppliers, said it expects shipments of both chips to sequentially decline in the near term.

“Some PC customers are adjusting their memory and storage purchases due to shortages of non-memory components that are needed to complete PC bills,” Chief Executive Officer Sanjay Mehrotra told analysts.

“We expect this adjustment at our PC customers to be largely resolved in the coming months.”

Analysts, however, wondered if this was a “speedbump or the start of a period of extended weakness.”

The question around Micron revolves around whether the memory industry is entering a prolonged downcycle, or encountering a more modest demand blip that will correct relatively quickly, Wedbush analyst Matthew Bryson said.

Micron forecast current-quarter revenue of US$7.65-billion, plus or minus US$200-million, while analysts on average expected US$8.57-billion, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

The company also forecast adjusted earnings per share of US$2.10, plus or minus 10 US cents, missing estimates of US$2.33 per share.

In the fourth-quarter ended Sept. 2, Micron earned US$2.42 per share on an adjusted basis, beating analysts’ average estimate of US$2.33 per share.

With files from staff and wires

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Tickers mentioned in this story

Study and track financial data on any traded entity: click to open the full quote page. Data updated as of 22/04/24 4:00pm EDT.

SymbolName% changeLast
ENB-T
Enbridge Inc
+0.96%48.43
NFLX-Q
Netflix Inc
-0.08%554.6
MU-Q
Micron Technology
+2.2%109.12
AZN-Q
Astrazeneca Plc ADR
+2.3%70.13
BA-N
Boeing Company
+0.39%170.48
AGF-B-T
AGF Management Ltd Cl B NV
-0.13%7.84

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