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Noah Zivitz

Managing Editor, BNN Bloomberg

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Suncor Energy is opening the spigots for its shareholders as surging oil prices boost cash flow and bolster its capacity for paying down debt. The company announced last night that it’s doubling its quarterly dividend and boosting its share buyback program. That news came alongside quarterly results showing funds from operations more than doubled year-over-year to $2.64 billion in the third quarter. Notably as well, Suncor said it’s building an outlook for next year based on an assumption of US$70 West Texas Intermediate crude; which begs the question of what more investors can look forward to if all the recent predictions of oil moving to US$100 per barrel pan out. We’ll address this and what Suncor’s peers could be poised to deliver as oil rides high. And on that front, we’ll point out as well that Whitecap Resources and Crescent Point Energy today also reported significantly higher third-quarter funds flow.  

BANK OF CANADA AFTERSHOCKS

How soon will the central bank be pressed into raising the cost of borrowing? That’s the big question after Tiff Macklem yesterday signaled a six-month window, starting in April, for that first move. The market is betting the Bank of Canada will have to move even sooner, with one model now suggesting the initial hike will come by January. We’ve got top notch insight coming up this morning on what comes next, how soon, and what it means for consumers and the broader economy: Scotia economist Derek Holt (who boldly called last week for eight hikes by the end of 2023) will join us shortly after 8 a.m., and Frances Donald from Manulife is up an hour later.

WHY JOE NATALE DOESN’T DESERVE ALL THE FLAK FROM EDWARD ROGERS

Buried deep in Mr. Rogers’ affidavit filed with the B.C. Supreme Court earlier this week was the PowerPoint presentation that he delivered on Sept. 22 as the basis for his argument that Joe Natale should be turfed from his role as chief executive of Rogers Communications. But those slides don’t tell the full story of why the telecom operator has lagged its peers in the last couple of years. Keep an eye out for Paul Bagnell’s analysis at BNNBloomberg.ca.

SHOPIFY LANDS WITH A THUD

Canada’s tech darling just missed profit expectations by a wide margin. Shopify’s adjusted third-quarter earnings per share was US$0.81 per share. Analysts were expecting US$1.13. Revenue, albeit it up 46 per cent year-over-year, also landed light compared to estimates. The stock has come under pressure in pre-market trading. Shopify also said its operating expenses will climb this quarter and cautioned that e-commerce has returned to a “more normalized” rate of growth.                                                                   

OTHER NOTABLE STORIES

  • Bombardier swung to free cash flow of US$100 million in the latest quarter, compared to the US$647 million that it burned through a year earlier, while adjusted EBITDA surged 69 per cent amid what the company is calling all-time high confidence in the business jet industry as the worst of COVID-19 appears to be in the rear view. Paige will have all the details on this turnaround story that has seen Bombardier surge to the top of the TSX leaders board with a year-to-date gain of almost 340 per cent.
  • Ford shares are surging in pre-market trading after the auto maker raised its full-year profit forecast and said it will reinstate a dividend after reporting significant sequential growth in profit and revenue amid “significant increases in semiconductor availability.”  
  • Similar to Canfor earlier this week, West Fraser Timber posted a sharp sequential erosion in profitability after yesterday’s closing bell (though it still exceeded the average estimate). Operating earnings in the lumber division collapsed to US$52 million from USS$955 million in the prior quarter as the commodity offered a case study in transitory inflation.
  • D2L confirmed the terms of its initial public offering, and it falls short of what the Toronto-based online education platform was hoping for. Shares have been priced at $17.00 apiece. The company earlier said it was aiming for $19.00-$21.00 per share. 
  • Toronto-Dominion Bank announced management reorganization today, triggered by the retirement of Teri Currie, who’s the head of TD’s Canadian personal banking. Head of Innovation Michael Rhodes moves into that role, and there’s also a changing of the guard at the top of TD’s U.S. retail banking operations. 

NOTABLE RELEASES/EVENTS

  • Notable data: U.S. initial jobless claims and GDP
  • Notable earnings: Shopify, Bombardier, Crescent Point Energy, Whitecap Resources, Yamana Gold, Aecon Group,  Royal Dutch Shell, Amazon.com, Apple, Newmont, Merck, Caterpillar, Mastercard, Molson Coors Beverages, Starbucks, U.S. Steel
  • 7:45: European Central Bank releases interest rate decision
  • 10:30: Inter Pipeline special meeting to approve Brookfield deal 
  • 11:00: Alberta embargoed briefing on legislative amendments to help municipalities collect unpaid taxes from oil and gas properties (embargoed until legislation tabled)
  • 13:00: Mark Zuckerberg keynote at Facebook Connect conference