4:15 p.m. ET: North American markets rise, close near session highs

North American equity markets closed off Tuesday’s trading session near intraday highs, with the S&P/TSX Composite Index up 1.04 per cent, the Dow Jones Industrial Average gaining 1.05 per cent, the S&P 500 0.82 per cent higher and the Nasdaq Composite Index up 0.59 per cent.

It was the second-straight day of gains for the TSX, while the three main indices south of the border have gained in each of the last three trading sessions amid some optimism over the impact of gradual economic reopenings. 

That’s helped lift the major indices to levels not seen since early March, before the widespread North American economic freeze was enacted. The United States is also dealing with waves of civil unrest in dozens of U.S. states as demonstrators protest the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.

In Toronto, eight of the 11 TSX subgroups closed the day in positive territory, led by consumer discretionary, energy and financial stocks. Only the materials, health care and real estate sectors closed out the day in the red.

Oil prices continued to push higher, with U.S. benchmark West Texas Intermediate up four per cent to US$36.86 per barrel. Crude gained amid analyst expectations that the OPEC+ group will extend its record-breaking production cut agreement for another month in a bid to keep a floor beneath prices.

The Canadian dollar rose for the fourth straight day against its American counterpart to trade at 73.95 cents U.S., though the greenback has been broadly weaker against its global peers.

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1:15 p.m. ET: North American equity markets extend gains into midday, oil rallies

North American equity markets were solidly in positive territory through the midday trade, with the S&P/TSX Composite Index up 0.9 per cent, the Dow Jones Industrial Average gaining 0.8 per cent, the S&P 500 rising 0.4 per cent and the Nasdaq Composite modestly higher, up 0.1 per cent.

U.S. benchmark oil West Texas Intermediate accelerated higher into the afternoon, rising more than three per cent to US$36.55 per barrel to trade at session highs.

That helped lift the TSX energy sector, which led the way on the composite with a 3.4-per-cent gain on the session.

The Canadian dollar continued to move higher against its U.S. counterpart, gaining a third of a cent to trade at 74.04 cents U.S., though the greenback has been broadly weaker against almost all of its major-market peers.

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9:35 a.m. ET: North American equity markets rally in spite of widespread unrest

North American markets notched gains into the early trading day Tuesday, with the S&P/TSX Composite Index and Dow Jones Industrial Average both up half a per cent, the S&P 500 gaining a third of a per cent and the Nasdaq Composite Index up a more modest 0.1 per cent. The gains came in spite of widespread civil unrest in the United States, as some police responded with force to demonstrators protesting against systemic racial inequities.

In Toronto, shares of BlackBerry Ltd. rose about seven per cent to extend Monday’s gains after an unconfirmed report from StreetInsider said the company has held talks with Fairfax Financial over a deal for Fairfax to acquire the remainder of BlackBerry’s shares. In an email to BNN Bloomberg, BlackBerry declined to comment on rumours or speculation.

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Crude oil prices were higher, with U.S. benchmark West Texas Intermediate up half a per cent to US$35.0 per barrel, though it had briefly breached the US$36 level earlier in the day. Crude has gotten a boost from the OPEC+ group’s production curtailments, and there are reports the group may extend those cuts for another month to support prices.

Alberta’s Western Canadian Select also gained, rising 1.55 per cent to US$29.51 per barrel.

The Canadian dollar extended Monday’s surge against its U.S. counterpart, gaining another two-tenths of a cent to 73.90 cents U.S.