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Stocks sink after Donald Trump tests positive for COVID-19 – Financial Post

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Tesla Inc slipped 2.6 per cent even as it reported record vehicle deliveries in the third quarter.

Trading on Wall Street turned choppy last month, with the S&P 500 snapping a five-month gaining streak, as economic data indicated a long road to pre-pandemic levels and Congress deliberated over the next round of fiscal stimulus.

With a bipartisan deal eluding House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the White House, the U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday approved a $2.2 trillion Democratic plan on fiscal aid, but objections from top Republicans are likely to doom the plan in the Senate.

American Airlines and United Airlines, which began laying off 32,000 workers after government funding program expired this week, fell 2.2 per cent and 2.6 per cent, respectively.

“Despite the fact that positive news has been made of ongoing talks between Mnuchin and Pelosi, we’ve been skeptical that a breakthrough was possible prior to the election,” said Chris Zaccarelli, chief investment officer for Independent Advisor Alliance in Charlotte, North Carolina.

The CBOE volatility index, known as Wall Street’s fear gauge, shot up to a one-week high.

Declining issues outnumbered advancers 2.65-to-1 on the NYSE and 2.43-to-1 on the Nasdaq.

The S&P index recorded two new 52-week highs and one new low, while the Nasdaq recorded 37 new highs and 22 new lows.

© Thomson Reuters 2020

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Kuwait-born CEO breaks glass ceiling to lift ailing Laurentian Bank – BNN

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Rania Llewellyn broke the glass ceiling as the first woman to lead one of Canada’s eight largest banks. Her challenge at Laurentian Bank of Canada is to revive a lender that may need capital and has struggled for years to find growth.

Llewellyn, who was named Laurentian’s chief executive officer Tuesday, comes with an unusual biography for a Canadian bank chief. Born in Kuwait, she moved to Canada as a teenager from Egypt, where her father is from, and earned a master’s degree in business administration from St. Mary’s University, a small public college in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

She joined Bank of Nova Scotia as a part-time teller and began a 26-year climb that included a stint as CEO of Roynat Capital, a unit of the bank that finances medium-sized businesses. Before jumping to Laurentian, she’d been promoted to executive vice president in charge of Scotiabank’s global payments strategy.

Canadian banks rarely hire external candidates for the top job. Montreal-based Laurentian has unique problems, though. Llewellyn, 44, will need to shore up the bank’s capital position, which is the weaker than that of the country’s largest banks, while trying to undo the damage from the company’s prior missteps, including a problem with mortgage fraud.

The bank’s results have trailed analysts’ estimates in eight of the past 11 quarters, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Among the major moves she may make include raising new equity and divesting non-core assets like the Northpoint commercial-finance business, according to analysts. No matter what she does, it will require bold action to revive Laurentian’s shares, which have dropped 49 per cent over the past five years, compared to a 12 per cent gain for the S&P/TSX Commercial Banks Index.

“An external hire brings more potential for change, which is good,” Gabriel Dechaine, an analyst at National Bank of Canada, said in a note. “A new CEO will have more flexibility to take dramatic action to put the bank on more solid footing during the current downturn and into the future.”

Laurentian shares rose as much as 1.2 per cent after Llewellyn’s hiring was announced and closed up 0.2 per cent to CUS$26.36 in Toronto. The stock had fallen 41 per cent this year through Monday.

“Rania Llewellyn is the right leader to usher in a new era at Laurentian Bank. She has a proven track record as an energetic, strategic thinker focused on customer experience and tangible results,” Michelle Savoy, the Laurentian director who led the search committee, said in a statement.

Dividend Cut

Llewellyn fills the gap left by Francois Desjardins, who stepped down in June after a five-year tenure that included an incomplete transformation plan and other woes. In 2017, the bank found customer misrepresentations on some mortgages that it sold to another firm. Laurentian said it would buy back CUS$180 million (US$137 million) in mortgages sold to the firm.

Laurentian also took a hit in May, when it slashed its dividend 40 per cent, the first payout cut by a large Canadian lender in almost three decades, and posted fiscal second-quarter earnings that missed analysts’ estimates because of higher provisions for loan losses.

While the bank increased a key measure of its capital known as common equity tier 1 to 9.4 per cent at the end of its third quarter, that level is still “far from ‘fortress-like,’” National Bank’s Dechaine said, adding that the situation makes an equity raise possible.

The hiring of Llewellyn, who will also join Laurentian’s board, comes a little more than a month after Jane Fraser was named CEO of Citigroup Inc., which will make her the first female head of a big Wall Street bank.

While women have held some high-profile positions in Canada’s banking industry, Llewellyn will be the first female CEO of a major domestic bank. London-based HSBC Holdings Plc’s Canadian operations are run by Linda Seymour. She succeeded Sandra Stuart, who ran the operation for five years until her retirement. And Gillian Riley serves as CEO of Tangerine, Scotiabank’s online division.

Llewellyn’s appointment also is notable because Canadian banks typically choose CEOs from inside their firms.

Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce entertained the idea of external candidates in its CEO search in 2014 before choosing internal candidate Victor Dodig. The last time Royal Bank of Canada went outside the firm for a top executive was in 1908.

Llewellyn also isn’t a native French speaker — a disadvantage for the head of a firm headquartered in Montreal — but has committed to learning the language, according to a note from RBC analyst Darko Mihelic.

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COVID-19 outbreak declared at school in East St. Paul – CTV News Winnipeg

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WINNIPEG —
COVID-19 outbreak declared at school in East St. Paul

A school just outside of Winnipeg has declared an outbreak of COVID-19, according to the Manitoba government’s most recent bulletin.

Bird’s Hill School, located at 3950 Raleigh St. in East St. Paul, has declared an outbreak of COVID-19 on Tuesday.

The school is moving to the orange or restricted level on the province’s pandemic response system.

In a statement sent Tuesday afternoon, the River East Transcona School Division confirmed there were five cases in the school within two classrooms. The two classrooms are in the grade 2/3 levels, the division said.

The school is also taking steps to deal with the new restrictions.

“We are moving furniture to ensure the two-metre distancing is done. Deep cleaning has been done to the affected classrooms and commonly touched surfaces and staff are ensuring that students follow protocols regarding handwashing, mask-wearing (when required), and social distancing,” the statement reads. “Busing is being revised to meet the orange designation for Bird’s Hill School students. The parents will be receiving information for optional remote learning for their children while the school is in orange status.”

A provincial spokesperson said health officials have not ruled out in-school transmission at this time.

Bird’s Hill School previously reported on Oct. 11 that a confirmed case of COVID-19 was in the school on Sept. 30, Oct. 1, and Oct. 2.

OUTBREAK OVER AT WINNIPEG SCHOOL

The outbreak at John Pritchard School, which was declared last month, has now ended, the province announced on Tuesday.

The school is now at the yellow or caution level on the pandemic response system.

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Coronavirus cases spike again in Manitoba on Tuesday – CTV News Winnipeg

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WINNIPEG —
Cases of COVID-19 have once again spiked in Manitoba, as provincial health officials announced 110 new cases on Tuesday.

These new cases bring the total number of COVID-19 cases in Manitoba since March to 3,491, which includes one case removed from the total due to duplication.

The cases announced on Tuesday include:

  • two cases in the Interlake–Eastern health region;
  • 11 cases in the Northern health region;
  • two cases in the Prairie Mountain Health region;
  • seven cases in the Southern Health–Santé Sud health region; and
  • 88 cases in the Winnipeg health region.

The province said there are currently 32 people in hospital, including six people in intensive care. The number of deaths related to COVID-19 remains at 42.

The five-day test positivity rate in Manitoba crept back up slightly to 4.3 per cent as of Tuesday.

The province said there are 1,746 active cases in the province, along with 1,703 recoveries – however, Dr. Brent Roussin, the chief provincial public health officer, has said these numbers may not be accurate due to a back log in reporting.

The Winnipeg region continues to have the highest number of COVID-19 cases in Manitoba, with 2,113 total cases since March.

The Winnipeg Metropolitan Region is now under the orange or restricted level on the province’s pandemic response system, which includes increased restrictions.

This comes as Canada’s second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic pushed the country’s total case count past the 200,000 mark on Monday.

READ MORE: COVID-19 cases in Canada surpass 200,000

The majority of Canada’s cases are in Ontario and Quebec, though cases have been rising across the country.

APPOINTMENT-BASED TESTING NOW AVAILABLE IN MANITOBA

The province had 2,149 COVID tests completed on Monday, bringing the total number of lab tests done since February to 228,713.

The province has also announced the introduction of appointment-based testing is launching in Manitoba on Tuesday.

The province said people are now able to make an appointment to book a COVID-19 test by calling 1-855-268-4318 or by going to the government’s website.

For now, the province said appointments will only be available at three sites, including 604 St. Mary’s Rd., 2735 Pembina Hwy., and 1181 Portage Ave.

The rest of the testing sites in the province are still working on a first-come, first-serve basis.

-with files from CTV’s Devon McKendrick and The Canadian Press’ Paola Loriggio

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