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Stocks Drop Slightly at Outset

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Equities in Canada’s largest market opened marginally lower on Monday, as energy and mining shares tracked subdued commodities, although optimism about an economic recovery capped losses.

The TSX dropped 15.21 points to begin a short week at 18,737.37. Markets are closed in Canada on Friday for Good Friday.

The Canadian dollar dished off 0.05 cents at 79.41 cents U.S.

Teck Resources on Friday pleaded guilty to two charges of violation under the Fisheries Act and said will pay a penalty of $60 million. Teck shares docked 12 cents to $23.83.

National Bank raised the target price on Lassonde Industries to $186 from $182. Lassonde shares raced ahead $3.64, or 2.2%, to $167.00.

Scotiabank raised the target price on AGF Management to $8.00 from $7.50. AGF shares acquired a penny to $7.43.

Scotiabank raised the target price on Altius Minerals to $17.00 from $16.00. Altius shares fell 13 cents to $14.31.

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange gained 3.26 points to 946.55.

The 12 TSX subgroups were neck-and-neck to start Monday, with health-care up 0.7%, information technology, up 0.6%, and consumer discretionary stocks, up 0.5%.

The half-dozen laggards were weighed most by energy, sputtering 1%, while gold and materials demurred 0.6% each.

ON WALLSTREET

Stocks added to losses Monday amid weakness in bank stocks caught in the downdraft of Friday’s margin call.

The Dow Jones Industrials backed off from Friday’s lofty close, 30.68 points to 33,042.20

The S&P 500 subtracted 19.94 points, to 3,954.60, from Friday’s record high.

The NASDAQ Composite retreated 106.63 points to 13,032.08.

Shares of ViacomCBS and Discovery fluctuated after coming under intense selling pressure last week. The two companies were believed to be hit by forced liquidation of positions held by the multi-billion-dollar family office Archegos Capital Management.

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Discovery gained more than 2%, while ViacomCBS dipped 1.4%. The two companies had lost 27% apiece during Friday’s selloff.

Elsewhere, Boeing was up 3% on news that Southwest Airlines had added 100 orders for the airliner’s 737 Max jet. The first 30 jets are scheduled for delivery in 2022.

Credit Suisse shares tumbled 13% as the bank warned it would face a “significant” hit to its first-quarter results due to the bank having to exit hedge fund positions related to the forced selling. Nomura also warned that it could get hit, sending its shares down nearly 15%.

Bank stocks weighed on the Dow industrials, with Goldman Sachs down more than 3% and JPMorgan Chase off 1.4%. The weakness came as government bond yields edged lower to start the week.

Though the market was taking a hit from the Archegos stumble, the situation is unlikely to have lasting impacts on the broader market, according to industry sources.

The Dow improved 6.9% and the S&P 500 has risen 4.3%, so far in March. The NASDAQ, however, has dipped 0.4% this month as some investors jumped high-flying technology names amid rising yields.

Investors are awaiting updates from President Joe Biden about his infrastructure plan which could cost north of $3 trillion. The president is expected to unveil his plan when he travels to Pittsburgh on Wednesday.

The stock market is closed for the Good Friday holiday, but the March jobs report is still slated for release that morning. Economists expect 630,000 jobs were added in March, and the unemployment rate fell to 6% from 6.2%, according to Dow Jones.

Prices for 10-Year Treasurys fell slightly, pushing yields higher to 1.69% from Friday’s 1.67%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices dipped 60 cents to $60.37 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices crumbled $28.10 to $1,708.60.


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