Perhaps surprisingly Canadian consumers are still shopping. In January retail sales in Canada jumped 1.5%; this came after a revised 0.8% advance for December, 2007. This apparently reflected higher spending on cars, clothing, and furniture. The market is interpreting this as unexpected good news for Canadian retail stocks. Take a look at their performance in the last few days.
5 day returns:
Canadian Tire (CTC.A) = + 5%
Shoppers Drug Mart (SC) = + 6%
Reitmans Canada (Ret.A) = + 12.5%
The Brick Inc. Fd. (BRK.UN) = + 8%
The Forzani Group (FGL) = + 4%
XIC (ETF for Canadian large caps) = + 0.7%