The market has started to plateau in recent weeks after a rally that was almost as quick as the market crash that preceded it. Investors have observed the impacts of each TSX stock and have tried to look forward, despite all the uncertainty.
It makes sense that after a few months the market starts to plateau, since most stocks have reached what the market thinks is their new fair value. However, now that it’s generally moving sideways, there are great opportunities to buy stocks that are undervalued and can offer significant potential.
So, if you are planning to buy stocks in August, I’d start with these four considerations first.
TSX utility stock
The first stock to consider owning is one of the top utility companies on the TSX, Emera (TSX:EMA).
Utility stocks are ideal businesses to own in market crashes and recessions. Emera is no different.
The company gets almost all of its revenue from regulated utilities and has operations in numerous jurisdictions, which helps to reduce risk. The highly defensive service it offers and regulated revenue are what make it such a great stock to own during times of turmoil. And long term, Emera will continue to grow both its share price and the dividend. That dividend currently has a 4.5%, which is a pretty juicy yield for a utility.
There aren’t too many stocks you can rely heavily on during this uncertain period. However, Emera is one of them.
TSX gold stock
Gold stocks are great investments during times of economic despair. With all that’s going on these days, it’s not surprising at all that gold prices and gold stocks have seen such rapid appreciation. The safe-haven aspect and hedge against inflation are exactly what investors are looking for right now.
Yamana, specifically, is one of the best options for investors buying today. The company has a consistent track record and operates in mining-friendly jurisdictions. Yamana shares have seen a positive increase from gold’s run-up in price. This has led to a significant share price increase as well as four dividend increases in just the last five quarters, totaling a 250% increase.
Of course, if the environment is good for gold, that almost always means it’s good for silver. Silver tends to lag behind gold, but when it rallies, it does so at much faster rates. That’s exactly what we’ve begun to see in the last few weeks, which may make August the perfect month for investors to buy TSX silver stocks.
There aren’t a whole lot of silver stocks to choose from, but one of the best choices to consider is First Majestic Silver.
First Majestic operates strictly in Mexico, the world’s largest silver-producing country. It also has the highest percentage of its revenue tied to silver prices. That alone is what makes First Majestic so attractive, as it will see some of the biggest gains from rising silver prices.
In just the last two weeks, the stock has already gained roughly 30%, and it looks like First Majestic may still have a long way to go.
Real estate stock
Real estate has been one of those industries that have seen the biggest variation of impacts. Some sub-sectors, such as retail, have seen significant negative impacts on business. Others, like residential real estate, have seen only minor increases on their business.
Then there are the industrial REITs such as Granite Real Estate Investment Trust, which have seen a significant boost to business as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
The rapid shift to online shopping by so many in this pandemic has made warehouse space a major priority. These online businesses all need somewhere to store their inventory.
Granite is the perfect TSX stock to take advantage of this trend.
The new normal is here to stay for a considerable amount of time, and the best investors will be those who can adapt early and find the best investments.
These are some of the top companies to buy in our environment today. So, if you’re considering buying TSX stocks in August, I’d start with these four businesses first.
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Brandon, Man. experiencing 'fairly large outbreak' of COVID-19: health officials – CTV News Winnipeg
BRANDON, MAN. —
The city of Brandon, Man. is dealing with an outbreak of COVID-19, according to the province’s chief public health officer.
A total of 34 cases have now been linked to a cluster in the western Manitoba city. Six others are considered community spread.
“What we see is that there’s a fairly large outbreak in that area right now, in the community,” said Dr. Brent Roussin, the province’s chief public health officer.
Six additional cases were confirmed Friday among workers at the Maple Leaf Foods pork processing plant but it’s not the only business in the community dealing with the virus.
A pylon perimeter surrounds the parking lot at the Tim Hortons along the Trans Canada Highway in Brandon.
The location temporarily closed after an employee who tested positive for COVID-19 worked while they were infectious but not symptomatic, according to Roussin.
While public health officials have said the risk of exposure at the coffee shop is low, it’s unsettling news for Alyssa Russell of Virden, Man, which is about a 40-minute drive west of Brandon.
“When they had to shut down Tim Hortons — where I was the day before they had to shut it down — I was there and that alarms me,” said Russell.
Russell was in Brandon getting tested for COVID-19, not from her visit to Tim’s, but because she came into close contact with someone else who had contact with a known case.
She’s worried about the growing number of positive cases in the area and so is Brandon resident Donald Blagden.
“We had flattened it for such a long period of time and now it’s kind of exploding, I guess you could say,” said Blagden.
Maple Leaf Foods said Friday afternoon a total of 10 people who work at the Brandon plant have tested positive.
Public health officials said so far it appears everyone’s contracted the virus outside the workplace.
“To be clear there is no evidence of workplace transmission at this time,” said Roussin.
In a statement posted on the company’s website, Maple Leaf said the plant continues to operate at normal capacity with strict protocols in place to protect workers and prevent the virus from spreading within the workplace.
Still, the United Food and Commercial Workers Local 832, the union representing Maple Leaf workers, continues to push for a temporary closure to avoid a large outbreak like the ones in Alberta and the U.S.
“Our members are extremely frightened,” said UFCW local 832 president Jeff Traeger. “They don’t really want to go to work.
“Many of them are telling us in large numbers they want to see the plant shut down for a short period of time.”
UFCW said it would give employees a chance to get tested, allowing the company to get a handle on the situation and do a deep clean. UFCW also said it can be difficult to physical distance in certain areas of the plant, such as the lunchroom and change area.
But Maple Leaf said the plant was inspected by both public health officials and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency Thursday and has been deemed safe.
“They said we were going above and beyond in everything we were doing to ensure safety and they support our decision to continue operating,” said Janet Riley, Maple Leaf’s vice president of communications and public affairs.
In a blog post on the company’s website Friday afternoon, Maple Leaf Foods president and CEO Michael McCain urged Brandon Mayor Rick Chrest to call on the community to strictly adhere to physical distancing and mask use in the community.
“We must work together as one to prevent the community spread of COVID-19,” McCain’s post reads.
In response, Chrest said the city has been carefully following the advice of public health officials and that people should be even more vigilant with public health measures to help contain the spread.
“We have consistently and strenuously advocated for our community to follow the practices of physical distancing, hand sanitizing, staying home if ill, get tested if you have symptoms and the advice to wear masks if physical distancing is difficult,” Chrest said in a text message do CTV News.
Meantime, a Walmart employee in Brandon who last worked Jul. 26 also recently tested positive for COVID-19. The store stayed open.
Prairie Mountain Health said the demand for testing has increased over the past week and additional screeners have been brought on to keep the city’s only testing site open over lunch. Health officials said it’s also possible the hours may be expanded, as the number of cases continues to increase. The testing site is currently open Monday to Saturday from 8:45 a.m. to 3:15 p.m.
Public health officials said anyone who recently visited the closed Tim Hortons in Brandon should monitor for symptoms and get tested if symptoms arise.
Alberta's unemployment rate drops for first time since start of COVID-19 pandemic, falling to 12.8 per cent – Edmonton Journal
Article content continued
“There are more than 15,000 unemployed Albertans in the educational services sector compared to one year ago after the UCP made brutal cuts to our education system in the middle of a pandemic. By rehiring these people, we can immediately get Albertans back to work, create a safer learning environment for students during the pandemic, and create a stronger economy for tomorrow,” Bilous said in a statement.
The 25,000 job increase in the Edmonton metropolitan area in July broke a four-month streak of losses, which the city’s acting chief economist Felicia Mutheardy said is a sign of recovery. The city’s labour force also continued to grow, adding 22,900 people.
“Given the severity of the pandemic’s negative impact on Edmonton’s labour market, the road to recovery is expected to be gradual and uneven. However, the turnaround in the region’s employment levels is welcome news, reinforced by the direction of provincial labour market indicators over the past two months,” Mutheardy said in a report published Friday.
Edmonton Chamber of Commerce president and CEO Janet Riopel called on all levels of government to support job-creating businesses in an effort to get the 122,200 unemployed residents in the Edmonton region to work.
“While today’s numbers are a step in the right direction, there are still over 120,000 people in our region who are looking for work and struggling to meet the needs of their families as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to devastate our community. We need all orders of government to continue supporting those job creators who are still trying to get back on their feet, so we can get our economy back on track,” she said in a statement.
Manitoba reports 17 new cases of COVID-19 Friday, 10 cases now identified at Brandon pork plant – Global News
Manitoba health officials reported 17 new cases of novel coronavirus Friday as Maple Leaf confirmed 10 employees at their Brandon pork processing plant have tested positive for the virus.
At a 1 p.m. press conference Dr. Brent Roussin, Manitoba’s chief public health officer confirmed reporting from the union representing workers at the plant that said four more employees had tested positive for COVID-19 as of Friday morning.
But Maple Leaf’s president and CEO Michael McCain said another two workers had tested positive in a statement posted to the company’s website around 3 p.m., bringing the total number of workers at the plant who have tested positive since the weekend to 10.
McCain said there is no indication the illness is spreading inside the facility, echoing what Roussin had said earlier in the day.
“Not a single case acquired it there from our investigation,” Roussin said at a Friday press conference.
Self-isolation dos and don’ts
The cases at Maple Leaf are linked to a cluster of 34 cases in Brandon, Roussin said, and appear to be connected to a person who travelled from Eastern Canada.
Roussin added that there is indication of community spread in Brandon.
The 17 new cases reported province-wide Friday bring Manitoba’s total number of lab-confirmed and probable cases reported since March to 491 and include 10 from the Prairie Mountain Health region, five in Winnipeg, and two people in southern Manitoba.
Roussin said as of Friday nine people are in hospital with COVID-19, including three in intensive care.
He said there are currently 132 active known cases in Manitoba and 351 people have recovered from the virus.
The number of Manitobans who have died from COVID-19 since March remains at eight.
Union calls for closure of Maple Leaf plant
Jeff Traeger, president of the United Food and Commercial Workers Local 832, said he expects more Maple Leaf employees will test positive.
“We are renewing our call on Maple Leaf to halt production in the Brandon plant until this situation is under control,” Traeger said in a memo Friday morning.
The union, which represents nearly 2,000 workers at the plant, said many employees have asked if they can refuse to go to work. The union said it is complicated, since the province has deemed their work essential and the facility safe.
“If you notice that protocols are not being followed properly, then you need to let your union know immediately,” the memo said.
Maple Leaf had earlier said the cases at the plant are not linked to workplace spread.
Public health and workplace safety authorities inspected the plant Thursday, and the company said the results support its decision to continue operations.
Roussin said the industry has learned from serious outbreaks at meat-processing plants in southern Alberta this spring.
Premier Brian Pallister said the province would only step in if recommended by health experts. He noted that the rise in cases shows people need to remain vigilant.
“Safety is the key to this recovery,” the premier said. “There is nothing more important than that.”
The cases at the meat plant come as the Tim Hortons restaurant at 1845 Middleton Ave. in Brandon was forced to close after the company said an employee there has also tested positive for COVID-19.
At the Friday briefing Roussin warned of a potential exposure at the Tim Hortons that may have occurred Aug. 1. He said the while the risk of transmission is low at the restaurant, located along the Trans-Canada Highway at 18th Street, customers should self-monitor for symptoms for 14 days and seek testing should symptoms develop.
A spokesperson from Tim Hortons tells Global News employees who worked closely with the employee who has tested positive are self-isolating for 14 days and the restaurant will remain closed until it can be thoroughly cleaned and sanitized and a separate crew of workers can be brought in.
While Manitoba has yet to mandate mask wearing to stem the spread of COVID-19, on Friday Roussin said wearing a mask is advisable when physical distancing isn’t possible, especially in Brandon right now.
When asked about masks Friday morning, Brandon Mayor Rick Chrest said the city is following the guidance of public health officials.
Chrest while people in Brandon are concerned said he’s been impressed by the work health authorities and affected businesses have done to try and control the outbreak.
“All of the companies that have been identified are doing a superb job of following the health protocols, locking down situations.. outright closing their store in the case of Tim Hortons to make sure that there isn’t any further spread,” he told 680 CJOB Friday morning.
Coronavirus: Manitoba reports 30 new cases, potential exposure on Air Canada flight
“We know that the virus is still in our province and still in our community and it seems that every health region has sadly taken its turn in this thing with a bit of an outbreak and right now we’re having one to deal with.”
The province says 1,452 lab tests for COVID-19 were done Thursday, bringing the total number of tests completed in Manitoba since early February to 96,999.
The new cases reported Friday bring the province’s test positivity rate to 1.10 per cent.
–With files from The Canadian Press
Coronavirus: After long-weekend spike, Manitoba announces 2 additional COVID-19 cases
Questions about COVID-19? Here are some things you need to know:
Symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing — very similar to a cold or flu. Some people can develop a more severe illness. People most at risk of this include older adults and people with severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease. If you develop symptoms, contact public health authorities.
To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. They also recommend minimizing contact with others, staying home as much as possible and maintaining a distance of two metres from other people if you go out. In situations where you can’t keep a safe distance from others, public health officials recommend the use of a non-medical face mask or covering to prevent spreading the respiratory droplets that can carry the virus. In some provinces and municipalities across the country, masks or face coverings are now mandatory in indoor public spaces.
For full COVID-19 coverage from Global News, click here.
© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.
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