TSX posts gain while U.S. markets soar to new heights on tech optimism

By Rosa Saba, The Canadian Press

TORONTO — Canada’s main stock index gained almost 150 points Thursday, while its Wall St. counterparts soared, led by technology stocks after another blowout report from chipmaker Nvidia. 

Markets had a “euphoric” day, said Rose Devli, portfolio manager at 1832 Asset Management. 

“Nothing can stop this positive momentum,” she said. 

In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average was up 456.87 points at 39,069.11. The S&P 500 index was up 105.23 points at 5,087.03, while the Nasdaq composite was up 460.72 points at 16,041.62.

Equities jumped from the get-go Thursday after Nvidia reported earnings after the bell the day before, with the Nasdaq leading gains, leaping almost three per cent. The S&P 500 was up 2.1 per cent, notching another record high, while the Dow’s 1.2 per cent gain also brought that index to a new record as it broke above 39,000 points for the first time. 

Nvidia shares jumped 16.4 per cent Thursday after reporting soaring revenues and profits in its latest quarter. The company earned US$12.29 billion, up significantly from US$1.41 billion a year earlier. 

The company makes chips used for artificial intelligence products and demand is strong. AI has fuelled the recent sustained rally in U.S. equities. 

“There’s no sign that this AI mania’s subsiding at all,” said Devli, noting other AI-related companies in particular rode the wave on Thursday.

Nvidia said it expects revenue of about US$24 billion for the current quarter, which would be an increase from US$22.1 billion in the latest quarter. It also expects “continued growth” in 2025 and beyond.

“It just shows to the market that this isn’t the last inning. This is only the first inning,” Devli said. 

Markets all but ignored more comments by U.S. Federal Reserve officials Thursday about how cutting interest rates too quickly is dangerous, said Devli. They also largely ignored some mixed economic data, she added. 

“There’s just bigger fish to fry, and there’s too much money on the sidelines to burn,” she said. 

The S&P/TSX composite index closed up 145.68 points at 21,318.08.

The Canadian dollar traded for 74.11 cents UScompared with 74.01 cents US on Wednesday.

The April crude contract was up 70 cents at US$78.61 per barreland the April natural gas contract was down three cents at US$1.83 per mmBTU.

The April gold contract was down US$3.60 at US$2,030.70 an ounce and the March copper contract was up two cents at US$3.90 a pound.

— With files from The Associated Press

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 22, 2024.

Companies in this story: (TSX:GSPTSE, TSX:CADUSD) 

Rosa Saba, The Canadian Press

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