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Canada’s main stock index opened higher on Friday, driven by gains in energy shares amid rising oil prices.

At the open, the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index was up 124.84 points, or 0.9 per cent, at 14,337.59.

Energy stocks rose 2.4 per cent while health care stocks, which include marijuana providers, was up 2.7 per cent. Consumer discretionary stocks were up 1.8 per cent.

Canada Goose gained 3.4 per cent, Baytex Energy was up 5 per cent. Lundin Mining added 5 per cent after Morgan Stanley resumed coverage of the stock with an “overweight” rating and a price target of $8.70.

U.S. stocks opened higher on Friday, as a better-than-expected jobs report added to the optimism from proposed trade talks between the United States and China next week.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 43.9.47 points, or 1.94 per cent, shortly after the open to 23,125.69.

The S&P 500 was up 48.83 points, or 2 per cent, at 2,497.30. The Nasdaq Composite gained 141.38 points, or 2.2 per cent, to 6,605.34.

Nonfarm payrolls increased by 312,000 jobs in December, the largest gain since February and beat economists’ expectations of 177,000 jobs. There were also healthy increases in wages and the unemployment rate.

Stock futures initially pared some gains after the Labor Department report, which allayed fears over economic growth but bolstered concerns that the Federal Reserve would stick with its plan for two interest rate hikes this year.

But futures soon recovered to levels they were at earlier in on Friday, after China and the United States planned for a fresh round of trade talks on Jan. 7-8 to try and resolve their dispute.

“It’s going to be an interesting day to say the least. We’ll see if the early strength in the market holds, given (the jobs report) will likely give more reason for the Fed raising, not cutting, rates as some had speculated during the day yesterday,” said Michael James, managing director of equity trading at Wedbush Securities in Los Angeles.

“But it’s been nothing but volatility in both directions, primarily to the downside over the last month and that’s only going to continue as you get cross currents.”

Treasury yields rose on Friday after December’s U.S. employment report from the Labor Department came in stronger than expected.

U.S. employers hired the most workers in 10 months in December while boosting wages, which could help to allay fears about the economy’s health that has recently roiled financial markets.

The yield on two-year notes, which reflect traders’ expectations of Federal Reserve interest rate hikes, was up 6 basis points to 2.45 per cent.

The market is projecting there is little room for further hikes, the latest sign of which came on Thursday when two-year U.S. Treasury yields fell below the Fed’s policy rate for the first time in over a decade.

Investors will be looking for clues on monetary policy from Fed Chair Jerome Powell when he speaks later Friday.

“Powell’s speech will be interesting because the data supports what he has been saying so far about the economy remaining healthy,” said Brad McMillan, chief investment officer at Commonwealth Financial Network in Waltham, Massachusetts.

Fears of a slowdown were heightened on Thursday after data showed U.S. factory activity slowed last month and Apple Inc gave a dire revenue warning that sent Wall Street plunging, with the earnings season around the corner.

Analysts on average expect profits of S&P 500 companies to have increased by 15.5 per cent in the fourth quarter, outpacing the 14.8 percent growth in the year-ago quarter, according to Refinitiv IBES data. But the current estimate is lower than the 20 percent growth analysts were expecting in early October.


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