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Equities Flat by Noon

Jun 13, 2018 (Baystreet.ca via COMTEX) --

Canada's main stock index maintained positive readings - barely - by midday Wednesday led by gains in health-care and financial stocks.

The S&P/TSX Composite Index hung onto 8.31 points in gains by noon to 16,297.29

The Canadian dollar increased 0.28 at 77.1 cents U.S.

Gold weighed heaviest on the markets, as Barrick Gold slid 10 cents to $17.04, while Kinross Gold was unchanged at $4.84.

In utilities, Hydro One shed two cents to $19.42, while Fortis Inc. lost 11 cents to $40.57.

Energy stocks stumbled a bit, as Canadian Natural Resources dipped 23 cents to $42.85

Health-care stocks triumphed most Wednesday morning, as Valeant Pharmaceuticals gained 23 cents to $34.88, while Aurora Cannabis picked up 18 cents, or 2%, to $9.04.

Tech stocks also moved higher, as BlackBerry surged seven cents to $16.12, while Constellation Software gained $9.66 to $1,054.66

In the financial category, Sun Life took on 29 cents to $54.83, while TD acquired 38 cents to $76.10

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture gave back 0.57 points to 761.86

Seven of the 12 TSX subgroups sank, with gold easing 0.3%, while utilities and energy each down 0.2%.

The five gainers were led by health-care, up 0.9%, information technology, up 0.6%, and financials, eking up 0.2%.

ON WALLSTREET

Shares of Twenty-First Century Fox and Netflix led the NASDAQ Composite index to a record as a judge's ruling that the AT&T and Time

Warner deal could go through raised valuations across the media industry.

The Dow Jones Industrials recouped 5.65 points to 25,326.38, amid gains in the Walt Disney Company and losses in Caterpillar.

The S&P 500 added 2.77 points to 2,789.62, as health-care and technology offset energy and telecommunications.

The NASDAQ grew 33.12 points to 7,736.83, a new high, as gains in Netflix and Amazon carried the tech-heavy index higher.

Most media and telecommunications stocks rose Wednesday following a U.S. District Court's decision to allow AT&T's $85-billion bid for Time Warner.

The federal judge's ruling did not impose conditions on the merger's approval, clearing the way for other vertical deals. The approved deal gives the pay-TV provider ownership of cable companies such as HBO and CNN as well as film studio Warner Bros.

Shares of Twenty-First Century Fox rallied 7.4% Wednesday, ahead of a widely anticipated bidding war between Comcast and Disney for portions of Rupert Murdoch's business.

Disney, which offered Fox an all-stock, $52.4-billion deal for assets including cable networks and its entertainment businesses, will likely be forced to decide whether it's willing to top a significantly higher bid from Comcast. Disney shares turned around after opening lower and were higher by 2.5%.

Time Warner shares rallied 3.3% following the ruling, while online television and film company Netflix rallied 3.2% after Goldman Sachs reiterated its buy rating on shares and raised its price target to the highest on Wall Street.

AT&T and Comcast declined.

Investors are also focused on the culmination of the Fed's regular two-day meeting at 2 p.m. ET, when the central bank will announce its next monetary policy decision.

Fed Chair Jerome Powell and his colleagues are expected to announce a quarter-point increase in interest rates as the central bank seeks to normalize monetary policy with the economy showing signs of health.

Washington says producer prices in May increased more than expected for their largest annual increase in more than six years. The producer price index rose 0.5% last month boosted by a rally in gasoline prices and increased service costs. In the 12 months through May, the PPI increased 3.1%.

Prices for the benchmark for the 10-year U.S. Treasury were unchanged, keeping yields at Tuesday's 2.96%.

Oil prices regrouped 19 cents to $66.55 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices picked up two dollars at $1,301.40 U.S. an ounce.

********************************************************************** As of Saturday, 06-09-2018 23:59, the latest Comtex SmarTrend® Alert, an automated pattern recognition system, indicated an UPTREND on 10-11-2011 for DIS @ $32.76. For more infor

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