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Daily Pulse

Canada

Canadian trade with the rest of the world continued its recovery to more normal levels as the global economy rebounded from Covid-19 lockdowns. Merchandise exports rose 11.1% in July, adding to a 20.5% gain in June, Statistics Canada said Thursday in Ottawa. Imports increased 12.7% in July, after gaining 20.3% in June. Combined, exports and imports have increased 35% since falling to a decade-low in April, leaving them 5% shy of pre-pandemic levels. The figures will bolster confidence in Canada’s rebound, though economists caution a full recovery is far from assured. While global trade has been robust in some sectors like autos, other industries are still languishing, including travel.

Altice USA Inc. and Rogers Communications Inc. aren’t ready to abandon their pursuit of Montreal-based cable provider Cogeco Inc. The two companies said Thursday that they’re sticking with a $7.8 billion deal proposal that would let Altice USA acquire Cogeco’s U.S. assets while selling the rest to Rogers.

United-States

The megacap tech shares that drove stocks to record after record plunged Thursday as bearish investors reclaimed the upper hand on U.S. equity markets, at least for a day. The Nasdaq 100 sank 5.2% and posted its biggest rout since March. Apple Inc., Tesla Inc. and Amazon.com Inc., among the biggest contributors to the historic five-month rally, lost at least 4.6%. The index had gained in 11 of 13 sessions to notch records almost daily, defying strategists who warned that valuations had become too stretched. Highlighting the narrowness of the unwind, an equal-weight version of the S&P 500 that gives Coty Inc. just as much clout as Microsoft Corp. fell 1 percentage points less than the market-cap weight version in the biggest performance gap since July.

Europe

The European Central Bank is likely to step up its crisis response later this year, according to economists, as a faltering recovery and a stronger euro threaten to exacerbate price declines. Most respondents in a Bloomberg survey expect an increase in the 1.35 trillion- euro ($1.6 trillion) pandemic bond-buying program by December, with a median prediction of 350 billion euros. The Governing Council is seen keeping policy steady when it meets virtually next Thursday, but some analysts expect President Christine Lagarde to hint at the chance of more action in the future.

Asia

Chinese President Xi Jinping said nothing will come between the Chinese people and the Communist Party that has governed them for more than 70 years, setting a defiant tone in the face of criticism from the U.S. Speaking at an event marking the 75th anniversary of Japan’s formal surrender at the end of World War Two, Xi outlined areas where China would “never” accept foreign interference. He took aim in particular at threats to the Chinese Communist Party’s continued one-party rule. “The Chinese people will never allow any individual or any force to separate the CCP and Chinese people, and to pitch them against each other,” Xi said. “The Chinese people will never allow any individual or any force to distort the CCP’s history, and to vilify the CCP’s character and purpose.”

The author

Michel Doucet

Michel Doucet

Vice-President and Portfolio Manager
After obtaining a Bachelor's degree from the Faculty of Social Sciences at the Université du Québec in Montréal and his Master’s degree, Michel Doucet began his career as a junior economist at the National Bank head office in Montreal. In 1992 he joined the institutional equities and fixed income group at Lévesque Beaubien Geoffrion as an economist and market analyst. Over the years, he has led various projects related to the North American and international economies as well as Canadian public finances. In 1996, the team of institutional economists to which he belongs was ranked first in Canada by Brendan Wood International. In August 1997, Mr. Doucet joined the personal services division of Lévesque Beaubien Geoffrion where he served as an economist, fixed income market analyst and vice president. In 2004, he joined the Desjardins Securities full service team as Vice President. He now occupies the roles of fixed income strategist, economist and portfolio manager. He manages the Securities Portfolio Advisory Group, advisor marketing and distribution of financial planning and insurance.