March 31, 2020 Newsletter

Dear Friends,

March 31, 1889: the Eiffel Tower opens.
On March 31, 1968,President Johnson stunned the country by announcing he would not run for another term of office. Go to article »

Top chefs share their go-to comfort foods 
Spoiler: There are a lot of carbs.-CNN

On March 30, 1921, Virginia Woolf wrote the following in her diary from Zennor:

This is the last evening, and Leonard is packing, and I’m not in the mood for writing, but feel superstitiously that I should like to read something actually written in Cornwall.  By looking over my left shoulder I see gorse yellow against the Atlantic blue.  And we’ve been lying on the Gurnard’s Head, on beds of samphire among grey rocks with buttons of yellow lichen on them.  You look down onto the semi-transparent water – the waves all scrambled into white round the rocks – gulls swaying on bits of seaweed – rocks now dry , now drenched with white waterfalls pouring down crevices.  We took a rabbit path round the cliff, and I find myself a little shakier than I used to be.
Still however maintaining without force to my conscience that this is the loveliest place in the world.

From today’s The NY Times:
A wildlife safari — from your living room.
We’ve started a new series, “The World Through a Lens,” to transport you, virtually, to stunning places around the world. This week, the photographer Marcus Westberg takes us to Zambia, home to some of Africa’s best national parks.
In a country with no shortage of natural gems, Mr. Westberg has been captivated by the Luangwa Valley, “my first, and still strongest, love,” which he has visited more than half a dozen times.
His photos of Luangwa’s parks bring you up close to ferocious hippos, vibrant birds and affectionate giraffes — and let you pretend you’re the only visitor.


Ducks venture into the streets of Paris, France, during the coronavirus epidemic (COVID-19).

A leaping dog looks just like a fluffy cloud in this extraordinary image which captures it in mid-air. The identity of the thick-coated pooch – from a breed of herding dogs knows as Puli – is only betrayed by the two black eyes emerging from its flying fur. The image was taken by Italian photographer Claudio Piccoli, 48.

Runner Andrew Coscoran training on the beach cliffs in from of Bremore Castle Balbriggan, Co. Dublin, Ireland.

Market Closes for March 31st  ,2020 

Close Change
21917.16 -410.32
S&P 500 2584.59 -42.06
NASDAQ 7700.098 -74.053


TSX 13378.75 +340.25











International Markets

Close Change
NIKKEI 18917.01 -167.96
23603.48 +428.37
SENSEX 29468.49 +1028.17
FTSE 100* 5671.96 +108.22



Bonds % Yield Previous % Yield
10 Year Bond
0.697 0.760
30 Year
1.304 1.322
10 Year Bond
0.6695 0.7059
30 Year Bond
1.3214 1.3128


BOC Close Today Previous  
Canadian $ 0.71071 0.70614
1.40704 1.41615
Euro Rate
1 Euro=
Canadian $ 1.55257 0.64409
1.10354 0.90617


Gold Close Previous
London Gold
1618.30 1617.30
WTI Crude Future 20.48 20.09

Market Commentary:
On this day in 1854, U.S. Navy Commodore Matthew Calbraith Perry—after belching black smoke from his warships in Tokyo Bay and then unloading a telegraph, a daguerreotype camera and a chronicle of the Mexican War illustrated with bloody battle scenes—arm twisted the Japanese imperial government into signing the Treaty of Kanagawa, opening Japan to U.S. trade for the first time.

By Michael Bellusci
(Bloomberg) — Canadian equities jumped while U.S. stocks extended losses in late trading Tuesday, wrapping up a volatile month as investors assessed widespread impacts from the coronavirus pandemic. The S&P/TSX Composite Index rose 2.6% Tuesday in Toronto, following Monday’s 2.8% advance. Energy companies were the top performers after TC Energy Corp.’s plan to proceed with the Keystone XL pipeline. A bounce from lows is typical in bear markets, and the current rally is coinciding with quarter-end portfolio repositioning, according to Bryden Teich, a Toronto-based portfolio manager at Avenue Investment Management. The TSX index fell 22% this quarter, its biggest drop since the final three months of 2008. Take a look at some of Toronto’s winners and losers during the rout here, including Shopify Inc. and Spin Master Corp. “Investors still need to be cautious about wanting to be all in or all out of the market,” Teich said on BNN Bloomberg. Avenue is adding to certain stocks during ugly trading sessions, while “lightening up on positions that we view as non-core” during rallies, he added. Weak outlooks on Canada’s GDP were reinforced after the domestic economy expanded less than expected in January even before the pandemic caused a virtual shutdown. On the trade front, a spat with China that’s left Canada with little access to its biggest canola market is showing signs of easing as the Asian nation looks to stock up on edible oil.

* Western Canada Select crude oil traded at a $16.50 discount to West Texas Intermediate
* Spot gold rose fell about 2.8% to $1,577.00 an ounce

* The Canadian dollar strengthened 0.9% to C$1.4040 per U.S. dollar
* The 10-year government bond yield fell 6.7 basis points to 0.697%

By Bloomberg Automation:
     (Bloomberg) — The S&P/TSX Composite rose for the second day, climbing 2.6 percent, or 340.25 to 13,378.75 in Toronto. The index advanced to the highest closing level since March 13. Suncor Energy Inc. contributed the most to the index gain, increasing 18.4 percent. ShawCor Ltd. had the largest increase, rising 32.8 percent. Today, 168 of 231 shares rose, while 62 fell; 8 of 11 sectors were higher, led by energy stocks.
* In the past year, the index had a similar or greater gain seven times. The next day, it declined four times for an average 6.2 percent and advanced three times for an average 3 percent
* This quarter, the index fell 22 percent, heading for the biggest decline in at least 10 years
* This month, the index fell 18 percent, heading for the biggest decline in at least 10 years
* The index declined 17 percent in the past 52 weeks. The MSCI AC Americas Index lost 10 percent in the same period
* The S&P/TSX Composite is 25.6 percent below its 52-week high on Feb. 20, 2020 and 19.7 percent above its low on March 23, 2020
* The S&P/TSX Composite is up 6.4 percent in the past 5 days and fell 18 percent in the past 30 days
* S&P/TSX Composite is trading at a price-to-earnings ratio of 13.3 on a trailing basis and 14 times estimated earnings of its members for the coming year
* The index’s dividend yield is 3.9 percent on a trailing 12-month basis
* S&P/TSX Composite’s members have a total market capitalization of C$1.99t
* 30-day price volatility rose to 87.93 percent compared with 87.34 percent in the previous session and the average of 57.58 percent over the past month
| Index Points | | Sector Name | Move | % Change | Adv/Dec
Energy | 138.2195| 8.5| 27/3
Financials | 128.5074| 3.1| 23/3
Communication Services | 29.3173| 3.5| 5/3
Utilities | 21.7931| 2.9| 16/1
Industrials | 21.4918| 1.4| 23/8
Consumer Staples | 10.7321| 1.8| 10/1
Real Estate | 6.5445| 1.6| 20/5
Consumer Discretionary | 0.9110| 0.2| 8/8
Health Care | -0.2377| -0.2| 5/4
Information Technology | -7.3875| -0.8| 8/2
Materials | -9.6362| -0.6| 23/24

By Jeremy Herron and Vildana Hajric
(Bloomberg) — U.S. stocks sank, bulging the Dow Jones Industrial Average’s loss in the quarter to a level not seen
since 1987 as the pandemic almost certainly plunged the American economy into recession. The blue-chip index tumbled 23% in the three months, closing the period with a 1.9% drop. The S&P 500 fared little better, even after a furious, weeklong 17% rally that halted Tuesday. The Nasdaq 100 Index fell least among major indexes, as dip-buyers targeted the cash-rich tech mega caps that make up its core. There was almost nowhere to hide for Dow investors, as all but one of the 30 members ended lower for the year. Boeing plunged 54%, while Chevron and Exxon sank at least 39% after oil suffered its worst quarterly beatdown on record. Microsoft fared best, ending higher by 0.01%. Risk assets around the world tumbled in the period as governments instituted unprecedented shutdowns in large swaths of the global economy to combat the spread of the deadly coronavirus. Massive government spending and monetary stimulus lifted U.S. stocks from a rout that reached 33%, but the hit to GDP is shaping up to be monumental, with Goldman Sachs now forecasting a 34% contraction in the second quarter before a sharp rebound. As March ends, here are some of the major quarterly moves:
* The record bull market in U.S. stocks turned into a bear market on March 12, 11 years and three days after the last one ended.
* Bloomberg’s dollar index surged 6%, most since 2016, even after tumbling more than 3% since March 23.
* The Cboe Volatility Index averaged 57.1 in March, triple the mean in the prior decade.
* European shares plunged more than 20% for the worst three months since 2002. Spain lost 30%.
* West Texas oil lost 65%, the worst quarter on record.
* The 10-year Treasury yield hit 1.94% on Jan. 20. It fell to 0.31% by March 9 and is just over 0.6% now.
* Gold topped $1,700 in early March before plunging $200 an ounce. It’s on track for a sixth quarterly gain.
* China’s Shanghai Composite lost 10%, while Tokyo’s Topix fell almost 20% in its worst three months since 2008.
* Copper fell 23% and nickel lost 19%, both most since 2011.
* The pound fell more than 6%, while the yen was virtually flat versus the dollar.
* South Africa’s rand had its worst quarter since 2001 and Mexico’s peso fell the most since 2008.
On Tuesday, investors focused on signs that Congress could deliver a fourth round of stimulus as the virus spreads deeper in the country. President Donald Trump is reportedly seeking a $2 trillion infrastructure package. Treasuries edged higher, while the dollar fell and crude pushed back above $20 a barrel. Investors are at a crossroads, questioning whether extraordinary stimulus by countries and central banks can counter further retrenchment of firms and consumers as the outbreak spreads. New York City, which is emerging as the new epicenter of the pandemic, reported a 16% increase in deaths in six hours. Italy and the Netherlands are considering extending lockdowns, and Spain’s 849 deaths were the most in one day for the country. “The recent market movements do reflect efforts to factor in what has happened on the pandemic control side of things and the stimulus measures,” Cameron Brandt, director of research at EPFR, said by phone. “It’s almost certain that we’ll continue to see volatility.” In Europe, the Stoxx 600 rose and a measure of corporate- credit stress eased. Equities were mixed in Asia, where China had stronger-than-anticipated manufacturing data. The dollar rose versus the euro. In China, the official purchasing managers’ index rose to 52.0 this month. That’s up from a record low of 35.7 in February and above the 50 mark which signals improving conditions. Still, the country’s bureau of statistics cautioned that the single- month data didn’t necessarily mean that economy has returned to normal level amid continuing coronavirus concerns.
These are the main moves in markets:

* The S&P 500 Index fell 1.7% as of 3:20 p.m. New York time.
* The Nasdaq 100 Index dropped 0.2%.
* The Stoxx Europe 600 Index added 1.6%.
* The MSCI Asia Pacific Index gained 0.4%.

* The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index fell 0.1%.
* The euro declined 0.3% to $1.1013.
* The British pound was little changed at $1.2414.
* The Japanese yen gained 0.1% to 107.83 per dollar.

* The yield on 10-year Treasuries declined three basis points to 0.69%.
* Germany’s 10-year yield climbed by two basis points to -0.46%.

* Gold sank 2.4% to $1,604.30 an ounce.
* West Texas Intermediate crude increased 3.1% to $20.75 a barrel.
–With assistance from Todd White, Gregor Stuart Hunter and Andreea Papuc.

Have a great night.

Be magnificent!
As ever,


Efforts and courage are not enough without purpose and direction.
                                       -John Fitzgerald Kennedy, 1917-1963

Carolann Steinhoff, B.Sc., CFP®, CIM, CIWM
Senior Investment Advisor

Queensbury Securities Inc.,
St. Andrew’s Square,
Suite 340A, 730 View St.,
Victoria, B.C. V8W 3Y7

Tel: 778.430.5808
(C): 250.881.0801
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