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Bay Street To Judge Trump Tariffs -- Canadian Commentary

Canadian stocks were set for a rough open Friday after U.S. President Donald Trump may have sparked a trade war with China and the EU.

Trump told metals industry executives at a White House meeting that he would sign an order formally imposing the new sanctions next week.

"Sometime next week we'll be signing it in," Trump said. "And you're going to have protection for the first time in a long time."

Trump indicated that he plans to impose a 25 percent tariff on steel imports and a 10 percent tariff on aluminum imports.

Gold stocks may rally after the precious metal rallied overnight, but continued weakness in the energy sector may hurt the broader market.

WTI light sweet crude oil futures were down 33 cents at $60.66 a barrel.

Earlier in the week, the EIA said U.S oil inventories rose 3 million barrels on lower refinery demand. Gasoline inventories also rose sharply.

In economic news, Canada's real gross domestic product grew 0.4% in the fourth quarter, the same rate as the previous quarter. GDP was up 1.7% compared to the same quarter a year ago.

George Weston's (WN.TO) fourth quarter profit fell sharply after one-time items.

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