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April 1, 2011

Strategy Review

The Usual Suspects

Global markets were fairly mixed over the course of April as the U.S. dollar continued to lose ground against most other currencies. The U.S. equity market had another good month in U.S. dollar terms (the S&P 500 was up 2.8% for April) but was only mildly positive in Canadian dollars (up just 0.3%) as the loonie rallied a further 2.5% relative to the U.S. dollar. The Canadian equity market declined for the second month in a row, dropping 1.2% in April following the modest 0.1% drop in March. The Canadian market was pulled lower by its three largest groups: Financials, Energy and Materials – all of which declined in April. Energy was particularly interesting as the price of oil climbed over 6%, while oil exploration and production stocks fell. Fortunately, we have positioned the energy holdings of our clients’ capital appreciation accounts much more heavily toward energy service stocks, which gained in value during April.