TSX Pulls Ahead by Noon

Tech Stocks in U.S. Stumble

Stock markets in Toronto had pulled out of their funk Wednesday morning and gathered some positive momentum by noon, even as consumer stocks such as Alimentation Couche-Tard fell hard.

The S&P/TSX Composite had gained 54.42 points to 21,508.19.

The Canadian dollar squeezed higher 0.08 cents at 78.96 cents U.S.

Couche-Tard, for its part, ditched $2.82, or 5.6%, to $47.70, as the convenience store operator posted second-quarter profit that declined from a year earlier and narrowly missed market expectations.

Canada's warehouses are filling up with everything from furniture to alcohol, after floods in British Columbia washed out critical rail and road lines, disrupting already strained supply chains.

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange dropped 1.75 points to 957.74.

All but three of the 12 TSX subgroups were in the red, with consumer staples losing 2%, consumer discretionary stocks letting go of 0.9%, and industrials settling back 0.6%.

The three gainers were energy, up 1.5%, health-care, haler by 0.9%, and information technology, eking up 0.1%.

ON WALLSTREET

U.S. stocks struggled to rebound from their recent struggles on Wednesday as higher rates and poor retail earnings weighed on some sectors.

The Dow Jones Industrials remained in the red 115.2 points to break for lunch Wednesday at 35,698.60.

The S&P 500 index faltered 2.94 points to 4,687.76

The NASDAQ resurfaced 17.42 points to 15,792.55.

Traditional retail stocks took a hit following poor quarterly results. Gap lost 22% and Nordstrom tumbled about 26% in early trading. Both companies reported earnings misses for the most recent quarter.

Tesla shares were lower again after Elon Musk sold another $1 billion in stock. Software stock Autodesk fell 15% after the company issued disappointing fourth-quarter guidance.

Computer hardware company HP’s shares got a more than 9% lift after reporting earnings that beat on the top and bottom lines and issuing higher first-quarter earnings guidance.

The market did receive some positive news on the economic front. Initial jobless claims for the prior week came in at 199,000, the lowest level in more than 50 years. Gross Domestic Product growth for the third quarter was revised up slightly to 2.1%. Personal income and consumer spending both rose more than expected.

The data was not uniformly positive, however, as durable goods orders showed an unexpected decline in October, according to the Census Bureau. Core PCE, the Fed’s preferred inflation measure, was up 4.1% year over year for October, matching estimates.

Later on Wednesday, investors will be looking through the minutes from the latest Fed meeting.

U.S. markets will be closed Thursday on Thanksgiving Day. The stock market closes early at 1 p.m. ET on Friday.

Prices for 10-year Treasurys gained back some ground, lowering yields to 1.65% from Tuesday’s 1.68%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices settled five cents to $78.45 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices regained $4.90 to $1,788.70 U.S. an ounce.