Equities Still Green by Noon

Pot Stocks in Forefront

Canada's main stock index rose on Wednesday, aided by health-care shares, ahead of a highly anticipated interest rate decision from the U.S. Federal Reserve due later in the day.

The S&P/TSX retained gains of 61.67 points to pause for lunch Wednesday at 19,610.18.

The Canadian dollar retreated 0.03 cents to 77.21 cents U.S.

The healthcare sector jumped, as pot producers Canopy Growth tacked on 18 cents, or 4.2%, to $4.50, Cronos Group added 11 cents, or 3.2%, to $3.50, and Tilray Brands gained three cents to $4.12.

On the economic front, housing starts in Canada jumped by 8% over a month earlier to 287,257 units in May, well above market expectations of 252,600 units, according to the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation.

The Canadian Real Estate Association reported home sales recorded over Canadian MLS Systems declined by 8.6% in May.

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange remained positive 2.24 points to 652.31.

Eight of the 12 TSX subgroups gained ground by lunch hour with health-care better by 2.8%, information technology soaring 2%, and consumer discretionary stocks re-claiming 1.5%.

The three laggards were gold, down 0.9%, utilities, off 0.5%, and energy, heading lower 0.2%.

ON WALLSTREET

Stocks jumped on Wednesday as investors anxiously awaited potentially aggressive action from the Federal Reserve to tame surging inflation.

The Dow Jones Industrials came off their highs of the morning, but still led Tuesday’s close by 184.74 points to 30,549.57.

The S&P 500 retained gains of 38.25 points, or 1%, to 3,773.73.

The NASDAQ Composite jumped 190.88 points, or 1.8%, to 11,019.02.

Communication services and consumer discretionary led the rally, gaining roughly 2% as technology stocks Tesla, Amazon, Apple and Alphabet rose. Financials also staged a 1.6% rebound while shares of Boeing, Goldman Sachs and Cisco brought the Dow higher.

Beaten-up travel names also bounced back, with cruise stocks Carnival surged 3% and Norwegian Cruise Line rising about 4%. Shares of airline stocks including Delta and United also rose about 4% each.

Treasury prices jumped, lowering yields to 3.40% from Tuesday’s 3.47%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices fell back $1.29 to $117.64 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices acquired nine dollars to $1,822.50 U.S. an ounce.