Afterhours Thursday delivered a one-two punch to markets when a journal announced that one of Gilead’s drugs is helping some COVID-19 patients quickly recover, and from Trump promising to re-open some U.S. states gradually to ease the current national lockdown.
The Dow soared 3%, though the Nasdaq gained only 1.38% as the indices reversed position from recent sessions. Playing catch-up, the beaten-up small-caps of the Russell 2000 leapt 4.33%. Energy and financials led with JP Morgan jumping 9% and Exxon Mobil surging 10.4%. The Nasdaq gained 6% for the week. Gilead rallied nearly 10%, but warned that the drug is still in testing with further results due at the end of this month, then later in May.
Stocks closed near session highs on both sides of the border as the TSX shot up 3.31% Friday and finished 1.36% higher for the week. The struggling energy sector finished a strong 8.3% higher as a barrel of WCS zoomed 50% higher to close over $11 per barrel. CNQ and Crescent Point rallied 11.5%. Tech and financials also outperformed. Investors in The Stars Group hit the jackpot when it announced strong earnings as the lockdown has encouraged a surge in online gambling from home. Stars shot up 16.8%.