Dow, S&P Soar to New Record

U.S. stocks rose again on Friday as the market’s rally to records carried on amid strong earnings from blue-chip companies as well as solid data signaling a snapback in the economy.

The Dow Jones Industrials jumped 164.68 points to close Friday at 34,200.67,

The S&P 500 added 15.05 points to 4,177.52, to hit another fresh high.

S&P 500’s strong performance in recent weeks has pushed its year-to-date gains to more than 11%. Cyclical sectors have been the biggest

winners this year with energy and financials leading the rally.

The NASDAQ Composite restored 13.58 points, to 14,052.34.

Wall Street wrapped up another winning week with the three major benchmarks all gaining more than 1%. The S&P 500 and the Dow posted their fourth straight positive week, while the tech-heavy NASDAQ has registered gains for three weeks in a row.

The last of the six largest U.S. banks to report– Morgan Stanley … Read the rest

TSX Cements Gains for Positive Close

Stocks in Toronto concluded a strong week, with resource stocks pushing higher Friday.

The TSX gained 24.2 points to close the week at 19,346.12. The index leaped 361 points, or 1.9% on the week

The Canadian dollar gained 0.25 cents to 79.96 cents U.S.

Gold stocks stole the show Friday, as B2Gold gained 10 cents, or 1.6%, to $6.35, while Wesdome Gold Mines attached 10 cents, or 1%, to $9.95.

In other resource stocks, Canfor Corp. added $2.10, or 7.1%, to $31.83, while Interfor gained $1.91, or 6%, to $34.02.

Among communications winners, AcuityAd Holdings took on 33 cents, or 2.4%, to $14.12, while Shaw Communications hiked 51 cents, or 1.5%, to $34.97.

Energy, however, got somewhat bruised, as Vermilion Energy slid 36 cents, or 3.9%, to $8.77, while Crescent Point Energy dipped 14 cents, or 2.8%, to $4.86.

In techs, Hut 8 Mining lost 48 cents, or 6%, to … Read the rest

Digital Revolution and Repression in Myanmar and Thailand

By Karen Lee

Following the February 1 coup, Myanmar’s netizens became the latest to join the #MilkTeaAlliance, an online collective of pro-democracy youth across Asia.

Drawing from the protest movements in Hong Kong, Taiwan, and neighboring Thailand, youth activists in Myanmar have leveraged their intimate knowledge of digital tools to protest authoritarianism. Inspired by the movement in Myanmar, the nearly year-long protests in Thailand against that country’s military-led government have gained renewed momentum.

The rise of digital activism across Southeast Asia in the past half-decade has featured a new generation of protesters leveraging social media and co-opting popular symbols to attract international coverage and garner sympathy for their causes.

Although the governments they are fighting against have also used these same tools to restrict protest activities and free speech, the digital imprint of the Milk Tea Alliance in the region ensures that these protests will not easily be forgotten.

The

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Canada CPI, Bank Rate Word Due Next Week

Monday

U.S.

Economic Lookahead

Durable goods orders (March)

Core capital goods orders (March)

Featured Earnings

Coca-Cola Company (NYSE:KO) (Q1) EPS projected at 50 cents, compared to 51 cents in the prior-year quarter.

International Business Machines Corporation (NYSE:IBM) (Q2) EPS projected at $1.67, compared to $1.84 in the prior-year quarter.

Prologis Inc. (NYSE:PLD) (Q1) EPS projected at 94 cents, compared to 83 cents in the prior-year quarter.

Canada

Featured Earnings

Bear Creek Mining Corporation (T.BCM) (Q4) EPS projected for loss of three cents, compared to a loss of four cents in the prior-year quarter.

People Corporation (T.PEO) (Q2) EPS projected at six cents, compared to three cents in the prior-year quarter.

PrairieSky Royalty Ltd. (T.PSK) (Q1) EPS projected at seven cents, compared to six cents in the prior-year quarter.

Tuesday

U.S.

Economic Lookahead

Case-Shiller home price index (Feb.)

Consumer confidence index (April)

Homeownership rate (Q1)

Featured Earnings

Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) … Read the rest

Thai fruit exports to FTA markets up 107 percent

BANGKOK (NNT) – Thailand’s fruit exports continue to increase, despite the sluggish global economy caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, with key trade partners being countries that have free trade agreements (FTAs) with the kingdom.

Thai durian, mangosteen, longan and mango are popular in China, Hong Kong and ASEAN member states.

Director-General of the Department of Trade Negotiations, Oramon Sapthaweetham, said Thai fruit exports, to 18 countries which have FTAs with Thailand, reported 107 percent growth in the first two months of 2021, compared to the same period of last year. The total trade value was US$461 million, accounting for 94.94 percent of the country’s total fruit exports.

China, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, the Philippines, Hong Kong, Australia and Chile are top importers of Thai fruits, especially fresh durian, mangosteen, longan and mango. Thai exporters are able to benefit from FTA privileges.

Currently, Thailand is the 7th largest fruit exporter, and the … Read the rest

Large Gains for TSX

Stocks in North America celebrated Thursday with huge gains, some reaching record peaks, on strength of resource issues.

The TSX raced higher 150.26 points to close Thursday at 19,321.92.

The Canadian dollar slid 0.12 cents to 79.77 cents U.S.

Gold led the charge, with B2Gold rising 41 cents, or 7%, to $6.27, while Centerra Gold hiked 58 cents, or 5.2%, to $11.80.

In other resources, Fortuna Silver Mines took on 65 cents, or 7.2%, to $9.68, while HudBay Minerals gained 67 cents, or 6.8%, to $10.55.

In real-estate, Interrent REIT picked up 36 cents, or 2.4%, to $15.60, while REAL Matters moved forward 37 cents, or 2.3%, to $16.43.

Health-care issues, however, put a bit of a lid on things, with Organigram retreating 14 cents, or 4.3%, to $3.10, while Aphria caved 77 cents, or 4.3%, to $17.03.

In the energy field, Enerplus dwindled 22 cents, or 3.1%, to $6.78. … Read the rest

S&P Shies Away from Record Levels, on Tech Weakness

The S&P 500 slipped from record levels in volatile trading on Wednesday amid a selloff in technology shares, while investors digested the first batch of corporate earnings that largely exceeded expectations.

The Dow Jones Industrials fell rapidly from its peak of the day, but still registered 53.62 points in the green to close Wednesday at 33,730.89.

The S&P 500 fell 16.93 points to 4,124.66, after hitting a fresh record high earlier in the session.

The NASDAQ Composite slouched 138.26 points, or 1%, to 13,857.84.

Coinbase’s widely watched direct listing on Wednesday opened at $381 on the Nasdaq and shot up as high as $429, but shares quickly rolled over and closed at $328.28. As Coinbase shares reversed lower, bitcoin fell 1.5% to around $61,930 from a record high of more than $63,800.

Crypto investors were hailing the company’s stock market debut as a major milestone for the industry after years … Read the rest

3 Reasons to Be Optimistic About the Baht Right Now

The Thai Baht, our beleaguered currency, has had something of a difficult few years. Successful debt and inflation crises have eroded the value of the Baht numerous times, not least the events of 2015-16, which saw the Baht plunge to some of the lowest levels against the Dollar in history.

However, things finally seem to be turning around. The erosion of the dollar continued capital flight into Asia, and a host of other factors have led to a sustained rally of the Baht that has pushed it to some of its highest-ever valuations.

While some detractors might think this is a temporary blip, here are three reasons for longer-term optimism. 

1. The US Dollar is Set for a Weak 2021

Probably one of the most important factors for the rise of the Baht is the continued weakness of the US dollar, which most experts agree is going to continue declining … Read the rest

TSX Finishes Flat

Equities in Canada’s largest centre barely held onto gains by the close on Tuesday, supported mostly by health-care and cannabis issues.

The TSX retained 2.42 points in gains to end Tuesday at 19,203.70.

The Canadian dollar was higher 0.21 cents at 79.81 cents U.S.

In the cannabis sector, Aphria towered over Monday’s close, gaining $1.05, or 6%, to $18.52, while OrganiGram Holdings jumped 10 cents, or 2.9%, to $3.60.

In gold, NovaGold sprinted 76 cents, or 3.1%, to $11.83, while Alamos Gold climbed 50 cents, or 5%, to $10.61.

In other resources, Lundin Mining added 55 cents, or 4.2%, to $13.75, while Endeavour Silver triumphed 33 cents, or 5.1%, to $6.84.

Among energy stocks, MEG Energy dropped 11 cents, or 1.6%, to $6.22, while Crescent Point Energy lost eight cents, or 1.7%, to $4.78.

In the financial field, Canaccord Genuity went south 27 cents, or 2.2%, to $11.83, while Bank … Read the rest

Stocks Slip from Record

U.S. stocks hovered near their record levels on Monday as dull trading resumed before the release of widely-watched inflation data and the start of first-quarter corporate earnings.

The Dow Jones Industrials let go of 55.2 points to 33,765.48. Intel was the biggest decliner in the blue-chip Dow, dropping more than 4%.

The S&P 500 inched back 0.81 points to 4,127.99.

The NASDAQ Composite docked 50.19 points to 13,850.

Shares of Nuance Communications jumped nearly 16% after Microsoft announced it will buy the speech recognition company in a $16-billion deal. The Nuance acquisition represents Microsoft’s largest acquisition since it bought LinkedIn for more than $26 billion in 2016.

Nvidia jumped 5.6% after the chip giant said it first quarter revenue for fiscal 2022 is tracking above its previously provided outlook and that it expects demand to continue to exceed supply for much of this year.

The weakness in reopening plays weighed … Read the rest