HIGHLIGHTS OF THE WEEK
- Bonds sold off for the fourth consecutive week, while equity markets are set to decline for the first time since the U.S. elections.
- Investors have likely engaged in some profit taking in advance of next week’s events which could trigger increased market volatility. Sunday will see Italians voting on constitutional amendments and Austria’s Presidential election. But, the main event is set for Thursday, with the ECB widely expected to announce a tapering plan.
- Domestic data this week remained supportive of the narrative of continued U.S. economic recovery in the second half of this year. This morning’s payrolls data was less rosy than expected, but is unlikely to dissuade the Fed from raising its policy interest rate when it meets in a couple weeks.
- The Canadian government approved two pipelines this week – Trans Mountain and Line 3 – but rejected Northern Gateway.
- OPEC decided to cut production to 32.5 million barrels per day, sending oil prices up above US$50 per barrel.
- The Canadian economy advanced by 3.5% in the third quarter, but the underlying details of the report suggest that momentum is weak.
- Canada added nearly 11k jobs in November and the unemployment rate slipped to 6.8%.