“You Can Lead A Man To Congress But You Can’t Make Him Think” -Milton Berle

 

Markets Cautious Ahead of U.S. Congress Action

The Toronto stock market closed flat on Friday, capping a session where traders opted for caution going into the weekend amid the possibility of a U.S. government shutdown early next week. The S&P/TSX composite index inched up 2.46 points to 12,844.08 as BlackBerry turned in a huge quarterly loss and dismal sales figures. The Canadian dollar turned higher amid rising commodity prices, up 0.3 of a cent at 97.01 cents.  There was skepticism that Congress can pass a funding bill to keep the U.S. government operating after Oct. 1, when its new fiscal year starts. Also, the U.S. borrowing limit needs to be raised before Oct. 17. But Republicans want to tie the moves to defunding the Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as Obamacare, and slash spending. “They can’t afford to mess around on this,” says Wes Mills, chief investment officer at Scotia Asset Management PM Advisor Services. “They’re digging in their heels because they’re tying the Obamacare passage to the debt ceiling. And ultimately, if they push too hard on that, it’s going to rattle markets big time.” The Dow Jones industrials dropped 70.06 points to 15,258.24, the Nasdaq was 5.83 points lower to 3,781.59 and the S&P 500 index was down 6.92 points to 1,691.75.

 

Get Off Your Gluteus Maximus

How much would the federal government have to pay you to get off the couch and into a gym?The Parliamentary Budget Office has released a cost estimate for creating an adult fitness tax credit. It would allow taxpayers “to claim a non-refundable tax credit of up to $500 in eligible physical activity programming costs against their taxable income each year at a rate of 15% (i.e. the maximum annual amount to be offset against an individual’s taxes payable would be $75).  The credit wouldn’t be transferable, so only the person who sweats it out can claim it. Come on people, that’s more than 20 cents a day!  Get moving!

 

Market Update As Of September 27 2013

The TSX closed at 12844, up 38 points or 0.30% over the past week. YTD the TSX is up 2.42%.

The DOW closed at 15258, down -193 points or -1.25% over the past week.YTD the DOW is up 16.44%.

The S&P closed at 1692, down -18 points or -1.05% over the past week.YTD the S&P is up 18.65%.

The Nasdaq closed at 3782, up 7 points or 0.19% over the past week.YTD the Nasdaq is up 22.36%.

Gold closed at 1337, up 11.00 points or 0.83% over the past week.YTD gold is down -20.42%.

Oil closed at 102.67, down -2.16 points or -2.06% over the past week.YTD oil is up 10.91%.

The USD/CAD closed at 1.0304, up 0.0002 points or 0.02% over the past week.YTD the USD/CAD is up 4.33%.

 

 

Sources: Bloomberg; Investment Executive; advisor.ca