“Guns and Bombs, Rockets and Warships Are All Symbols of Human Failure” – President Lyndon B. Johnson


TSX Index Lags N.Y. Markets as U.S. Jobs Data Impresses

North American stock markets finished the Friday session higher led by a gain of nearly 370 points on the Dow after another month of solid U.S. jobs growth. Toronto’s S&P/TSX composite index was up 34.10 points to 13,358.77, ending the week of trading at practically the same level it began. The Canadian dollar was down 0.21 of a cent at 74.76 cents U.S.
Wall Street posted even bigger gains during the session helped by November data, which showed a gain of 211,000 jobs in the United States, suggesting that an interest rate hike is in the cards from the Federal Reserve at its meeting later this month. The Dow Jones closed ahead up 369.96 points at 17,847.63 while the broader S&P 500 index advanced 42.07 points to 2,091.69 and the Nasdaq rose 104.74 points to 5,142.27. “I think the Fed wants to at least start the path towards normalizing rates, but the market is satisfied that it will be done in a very gradual fashion,” said Patrick Blais, managing director and senior portfolio manager at Manulife Asset Management. “We’re sitting in a golden scenario where the U.S. economy is strong but not too strong.”  Canada’s economy is facing a different scenario.  Statistics Canada’s latest monthly jobs survey found the economy shed 35,700 jobs in November, while the unemployment rate crept higher by one tenth of a percentage point to 7.1 per cent.


Consumer Confidence Moves Up in November

Consumer confidence in Canada improved in November boosted by the first increase in Alberta in six months and a big jump in Atlantic Canada. The Conference Board of Canada said November 3 its index of consumer confidence rose to 103.1, up from 95.3 in October. The jump was the biggest gain since March. The increase came as the index rose in Atlantic Canada, Quebec, Ontario, British Columbia, and Alberta. However, it slipped lower in Saskatchewan and Manitoba. Conference board senior economist Julie Ades noted there can be some volatility from month to month. “A lot of the recent weakness in consumer confidence is attributed to people’s perception of future job prospects in their community,” Ades said.  Alberta, which has been hit hard by the downturn in the price of oil, saw a five point increase to 50.5, however the index was still nearly 50 points below its average for 2014.
Atlantic Canada saw the index increase 25.2 points last month to 156.4 for November as the balance of opinion in the region improved on all four of the survey’s questions. The index is based on how respondents perceive their current finances, future finances, and future job prospects, and whether they think it is a good time to make a major purchase.  Overall, those questioned were more positive about their financial situation as 16.9% said they were better off now than six months ago rose, compared with 16.5% who responded that way in October.  The proportion of those who said they expect to be financially better off six months from now increased to 23.1% from 21.6%. Those who said they expect to be worse off slipped to 16.5% from 17.2%.  The survey was conducted between Nov. 2 and 12.


Market Update as of December 4 2015

North America
The TSX closed at 13357, down -11 points or -0.08% over the past week. YTD the TSX is down -9.47%.
The DOW closed at 17848, up 34 points or 0.19% over the past week. YTD the DOW is up 0.08%.
The S&P closed at 2092, up 2 points or 0.10% over the past week. YTD the S&P is up 1.65%.
The Nasdaq closed at 5142, up 14 points or 0.27% over the past week. YTD the Nasdaq is up 8.78%.
Gold closed at 1086, up 13.00 points or 1.21% over the past week. YTD gold is down -7.34%.
Oil closed at 40.11, down -1.60 points or -3.84% over the past week. YTD oil is down -23.88%.
The USD/CAD closed at 1.336859, up 0.0006 points or 0.05% over the past week. YTD the USD/CAD is up 13.92%.

The MSCI World closed at 1678, down 22.00 Points or -1.50% over the past week.  YTD the MSCI World is down -1.84%.
The Euro Stoxx 50 closed at 3331, down 158.00 points or -4.54% over the past week.  YTD the Euro Stoxx 50 is up 5.86%.
The FTSE closed at 6238, down 137.00 points or -2.15% over the past week.  YTD the FTSE is down -4.99%.
The CAC closed at 4715, down 215.00 points or -4.37% over the past week.  YTD the CAC is up 10.35%.
The DAX closed at 10752, down 542.00 points or -4.80% over the past week.  YTD the DAX is up 9.65%.
The Nikkei closed at 19505, down 379.00 points or -1.91% over the past week.  YTD the Nikkei is up 11.77%.
The Shanghai closed at 3525, up 89.00 points or 2.58% over the past week.  YTD the Shanghai is up 8.98%.



Sources: Bloomberg; Investment Executive;  Conference Board of Canada; advisor.ca,