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Weekly market wrap, Sept. 8, 2017: Political, environmental storms dampen markets
9/26/2017 5:50:10 PM
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By Fund Library News Wire  | Friday, September 08, 2017


 

By Mike Keerma

North American stock markets posted losses on a shortened trading week, as investors dampened their appetite for risk against a backdrop of continuing geopolitical tension over a potential North Korean missile test and the effects of Hurricane Irma on Florida this weekend. The S&P 500 Composite Index logged a loss of 0.6% on the week, while the Nasdaq Composite Index pulled back 1.2%. Toronto’s benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index retreated 1.4% on the week against a backdrop of a Bank of Canada rate hike and a decline in the price of crude oil. Gold, meanwhile, rose 1.5% on the week, and is now up 17.4% since the beginning of the year. The Canadian dollar finished the week higher, at US$0.822.

The Bank of Canada raised its target overnight rate by 25 basis points last Wednesday, to 1.0%, saying in an accompanying release that” growth in Canada is becoming more broadly-based and self-sustaining.” While inflation at below an annual 2% rate is roughly where the Bank expected it to be, it added “there remains some excess capacity in Canada’s labour market, and wage and price pressures are still more subdued than historical relationships would suggest,” suggesting a cautious approach to the timing of future hikes. Still, given the recent stronger-than-expected rate of GDP growth, the Bank said, “removal of some of the considerable monetary policy stimulus in place is warranted.”

Adding some bricks to the Bank of Canada’s foundation for rasing rates, Statistics Canada reported on Friday that the economy had added 22,200 jobs in August, pushing down the unemployment rate slightly, to 6.2% from 6.3% in July. However, the job gains were strongest in among part-time positions, which grew by 110,000, while full-time jobs dropped by 88,000 in the month.

FUND NEWS

* Desjardins closes 14 corporate class funds. Citing changes to tax rules by the federal government, Desjardins Investments said it is closing 14 of its corporate class funds. In a release, Desjardin said, the closures are “due in part to the fact that in 2016, the federal government put an end to the Corporate Class Funds’ main advantages, such as asset transfers from one fund to another without tax consequences and tax deferrals.” Desjardins plans to shutter the following funds about Nov. 15.

Desjardins Money Market Corporate Class
Desjardins Canadian Preferred Share Corporate Class
Desjardins Dividend Growth Corporate Class
Desjardins Canadian Equity Income Corporate Class
Desjardins IBrix Canadian High Dividend Equity Corporate Class
Desjardins IBrix Canadian Equity Focus Corporate Class
Desjardins Canadian Equity Value Corporate Class
Desjardins Canadian Equity Growth Corporate Class
Desjardins American Equity Growth Corporate Class
Desjardins American Equity Growth Currency Neutral Corporate Class
Desjardins Overseas Equity Growth Corporate Class
Desjardins Global Equity Growth Corporate Class
Desjardins Global Small Cap Equity Corporate Class
Desjardins Emerging Markets Opportunities Corporate Class

* Sun Life buys Excel. Sun Life Global Investments announced the acqusition of fund manager Excel Funds Management and Excel Investment Counsel Inc., which currently sponsor and manage the Excel Funds.

Excel specializes in emerging markets funds and has about $700 million in assets under management. According to a press release, Excel’s president and CEO Bhim D. Asdhir will join Sun Life Global Investments leadership team as a member of the integration planning committee and will continue as the senior relationship manager for the funds’ sub-advisors and brokers. Subject to approvals, the transaction is expected to close by the end of this year.

Check Fund Library’s Market Activity page regularly for active updates on key market indexes and commodities.

@FundLibrary – Follow Fund Library on Twitter for daily information and updates.

Disclaimer

© 2017 by Fund Library. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part by any means without prior written permission is prohibited.

The foregoing is for general information purposes only and is the opinion of the writer. No guarantee of investment performance is made or implied. It is not intended to provide specific personalized advice including, without limitation, investment, financial, legal, accounting or tax advice.

 
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