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Gains Reported in First Hour

Equities in Canada's largest centre rose barely on Wednesday, supported by a jump in shares of fashion retailer Aritzia following higher quarterly revenue and gains in mining stocks.

The TSX Composite Index eked up 1.55 points in Wednesday's first hour at 16,419.94

The Canadian dollar slouched 0.11 cents to 75.65 cents U.S.

Aritzia shares rocketed $2.14, or 13.2%, to $18.30.

CIBC cut the target price Aphria to $6.50 from $7.00. Aphria shares descended 53 cents, or 7.4%, to $6.64.

National Bank of Canada raised the target price on Gildan Activewear to $55.00 from $54.00. Gildan shares acquired 13 cents to $46.64.

On matters macroeconomic, Statistics Canada's Consumer Price Index rose 1.9% on a year-over-year basis in September, matching the increase in August. On a seasonally adjusted monthly basis, the CPI fell 0.1% in September.

The agency also reported that foreign investors acquired $5.0 billion of Canadian securities in August, following two months of divestment.

At the same time, Canadian investors reduced their holdings of foreign securities by $4.7 billion, the largest divestment since January

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange gave back 0.87 points to start out Wednesday to 540.32

The 12 Toronto subgroups were evenly split, as consumer discretionary stocks picked up 0.6%, while materials and financials each gained 0.3%.

The half-dozen laggards were weighed most by information technology, shedding 1.3%, and health-care, down 0.9%, while real-estate lost 0.4%.

ON WALLSTREET

Stocks fell on Wednesday as weak retail sales data, coupled with persisting trade-war fears, offset strong earnings results.

The Dow Jones Industrials sank 77.89 points to begin Wednesday at 26,946.91

The S&P 500 fell 7.61 points to 2,988.07.

The NASDAQ Composite docked 30.91 points to 8,117.79

Bank of America reported Wednesday better-than-expected earnings and revenue for the third quarter, sending its stock up more than 2%. The company's consumer and banking businesses helped offset slumping trading revenues.

United Airlines, meanwhile, rose more than 1% on earnings that topped analyst expectations. The airline also raised its full-year earnings guidance.

Bank of New York Mellon also climbed 0.8% as its quarterly numbers beat Wall Street estimates.

So far, the corporate earnings season is off to a blistering start. Of the S&P 500 companies that have reported through Wednesday morning, 83% have topped analyst expectations.

Retail sales unexpectedly dropped 0.3% in September, marking their first decline in seven months. Spending cutbacks on motor vehicles and online purchases, among other factors, weighed down retail sales.

Officials and diplomats said that differences over the terms of the U.K.'s split from the European Union had narrowed significantly on Tuesday. A crucial two-day summit of E.U. leaders begins in Brussels on Thursday. It is the last such meeting currently scheduled before the fast-approaching Brexit deadline.

The world's fifth-largest economy is due to leave the E.U. on October 31 and Prime Minister Boris Johnson has repeatedly insisted he will not request another delay.

Prices for the benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury rose slightly, lowering yields to 1.76% from Tuesday's 1.77%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices regained 24 cents to $53.05 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices gained $6.30 to $1,489.80 U.S. an ounce.

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