TORONTO — Markets in the U.S. and Canada posted small gains Friday after recovering from losses earlier in the day, ending a second week of volatile trading over concerns about the banking sector and high interest rates.
The S&P/TSX composite index closed up 41.57 points at 19,501.49, while also ending up for the week despite the financial sector concerns.
In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average was up 132.28 points at 32,237.53.The S&P 500 index was up 22.27 points at 3,970.99,while the Nasdaq composite was up 36.56 points at 11,823.96.
It was good to see markets appearing to calm down to end the week instead of selling off, said Colin Cieszynski, chief market strategist at SIA Wealth Management.
Markets in the U.S. and Canada began the day a lot lower, likely reacting to concerns about Germany’s Deutsche Bank shares dropping, said Cieszynski, but they “steadily clawed back lost ground,” he said.
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz was quick to express confidence in Deutsche Bank, saying “there is no reason to worry” about the lender being the next Credit Suisse.
Cieszynski said the relatively flat end to the week is encouraging, and shows that investors are not as worried about the financial system as they were previously.
This week saw the Federal Reserve raise its key rate by a quarter of a percentage point, but also shift its messaging to indicate it may end hikes soon.
There have also been concerns that all the pressure on banks will cause a pullback in lending across the U.S., The Associated Press reported, which could have effects on the economy and on the labour market that would make a recession more likely.
Like markets, oil prices also recovered some of their morning losses, noted Cieszynski.
Retail sales in Canada released Friday were encouraging, he said. Statistics Canada data showed retail sales rose 1.4 per cent in January, signalling consumer strength despite high inflation and rising interest rates.
The Canadian dollar traded for 72.66 cents UScompared with 73.15 cents US on Thursday.
The May crude contract was down 70 cents at US$69.26 per barrel and the May natural gas contract was up eight cents at US$2.36 per mmBTU.
The April gold contract was down US$12.10 at US$1,983.80 an ounce and the May copper contract was down five cents at US$4.08 a pound.
— With files from The Associated Press
This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 24, 2023.
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