Stock Market: A Look at Shopify, Cameco, Stantec and Other Big TSX Winners This Year


It hasn't been a great year for the TSX, but that doesn’t mean all Canadian stocks wallowed in mediocrity. Photo: MicroStockHub/Getty Images

It was a so-so year for the TSX. As of the close on Dec. 8, the Composite was ahead 4.88 per cent for 2023. All the major U.S. indexes did much better.

That doesn’t mean all Canadian stocks wallowed in mediocrity. There were several outstanding performers in the index. You just had to know where to look.

Here are the top 10 Canadian stocks from the recommended list of my Internet Wealth Builder newsletter, with the year-to-date gains as of Dec. 8. 

Shopify (SHOP-T). Last year was miserable for this Ottawa-based software firm that provides ecommerce services for companies around the world. The stock price fell from $194 in November 2021 all the way to $37 in September 2022. That’s a drop of 81 per cent! Oblivion loomed but didn’t happen. Results improved and the share price turned around. Third-quarter numbers showed a 25 per cent increase in revenue and a strong bump in profits. Year-to-date gain: 109.7 per cent.

Cameco Corp. (CCO-T). Nobody wanted uranium anymore. Cameco, our largest producer of the mineral, had seen its stock stagnate for years. You could have bought shares at around $33 as recently as last March. We recommended buying the stock in November 2021 at $33.63. Contributing editor Gavin Graham wrote: “(Nuclear) represents the best method of providing base load power while meeting ambitious carbon emission goals”. Now the world is acknowledging he was right. Several major countries, including Canada and the U.S., endorsed nuclear power as a key player in combatting global warming at the UN Climate Conference in Dubai. The price of uranium is up about 40 per cent from this time last year. Cameco’s share price has done even better. Year-to-date gain: 99.6 per cent.

Stantec (STN-T). If you think about international consulting firms at all, you don’t expect them to be based in Edmonton. That’s oil country. But Stantec, recommended by contributing editor Shawn Allen, has been quietly building a world-class organization for years, and business is booming. The company recently announced record third quarter results, with revenue of $1.3 billion (up 13.5 per cent over last year) and adjusted earnings per share of $1.14 (up 32.6 per cent). Investors have noticed. The share price cracked the $100 level in November and the stock is trading near its all-time high. Gain for the year: 61.9 per cent.

Equinox Gold Corp. (EQX-T). It’s been a banner year for gold, with the price of the metal moving over US$2,000. But many mining companies haven’t benefitted. The S&P/TSX Global Gold Index is actually down a fraction for the year, which isn’t going to excite anyone. But there are exceptions. Equinox Gold, recommended in March 2022, is one. After trading as low as $4.70 in February, the stock began moving higher. In October, the company announced that third quarter results were the strongest ever for revenue and production. Gain for the year: 55.3 per cent.

Fairfax Financial Holdings (FFH-T). CEO Prem Watsa has often been referred to as “Canada’s Warren Buffett”. This year it may be more appropriate to refer to Mr. Buffett as “America’s Prem Watsa”. Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway B shares are ahead about 14 per cent year-to-date. Fairfax Financial has gained about three times that and the stock is just below its all-time high. Gain for the year: 54.3 per cent.

Parkland Corp. (PKI-T). If you don’t live in British Columbia, you may not be aware that Parkland has a refinery there that provides a third of the province’s fuel and supplies its entire B.C. retail and commercial network. You may also be unaware that this is an international company, with operations in Canada, the U.S., and the Caribbean. Money is flowing in. The company earned $230 million in the third quarter ($1.31 per share), more than double the profit in the same period of 2022. The share price is close to the all-time high, reached in November 2019. As a bonus, this recommendation pays a nice 3 per cent dividend. Gain for the year: 50.7 per cent.

Boardwalk REIT (BEI.UN-T). It’s been a lousy year for real estate investment trusts – well, most of them anyway. The S&P/TSX Capped REIT Index is down almost 6 per cent year to date. But a few have left the field behind. One is Calgary-based Boardwalk REIT. It’s a company in the right place at the right time, specializing in multi-family rental communities – just what everyone says we need more of. Boardwalk provides homes in more than 200 communities, with over 33,000 residential suites totaling over 29 million net rentable square feet. The trust reported a third quarter profit of $39.4 million and funds from operations were up almost 13 per cent from last year. The units recently touched a new all-time high. Gain for the year: 45.7 per cent.

EQB Inc. (EQB-T). Most people won’t recognize the EQB name. Equitable Bank may generate more awareness. Think of this company as an upstart bank that has rapidly built its business by focusing on new Canadians, entrepreneurs, and establishing a strong on-line presence. The stock has been on our recommended list for 15 years and has been a consistent money maker. The shares recently hit a new all-time high. Gain for the year: 41.6 per cent.

Alimentation Couch-Tard (ATD-T). This is a huge Canadian success story. From its humble beginnings in Laval, Quebec, this convenience store company has grown into an international giant with 14,400 stores in 25 countries in North America, Europe, and Asia. It employs about 128,000 people. The stock was first picked in March 2013 at a split-adjusted price of $8.81. It closed on Friday at $76.56 for a gain of 769 per cent since it was recommended. Gain for the year: 28.7 per cent.

Boyd Group Services (BYD-T). Talk about the gift that never stops giving! Contributing editor Ryan Irvine recommended this auto and glass repair company back in August 2010 when it was trading at $5.50. It closed Friday at $260.66 for a gain of 4,639 per cent since the first mention. That’s an average annual growth rate of 34 per cent. The dividend is tiny but at that growth rate, who cares? Gain for the year: 25.9 per cent.

Gordon Pape is Editor and Publisher of the Internet Wealth Builder and Income Investor newsletters. For more information and details on how to subscribe, go to