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Bay Street Likely To Open Higher

Canadian shares look headed for a steady start on Friday, tracking positive global markets and higher commodity prices.

Reports that U.S. and China are set to have a fresh round of trade talks have helped ease market worries over the escalating tariff war that threatens to derail global economic growth.

Additionally, concerns around emerging market risks also have eased a bit following Turkey's central bank decision to raise its key interest rate sharply in a dramatic bid to control rocketing inflation and prevent a currency crisis.

However, with uncertainty clouding the NAFTA deal, stocks may find it tough to hold at higher levels. According to reports, the United States and Mexico have been building up pressure on Canada to sign on to a new NAFTA by month's end or face exclusion from the continental trade pact. However, the Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has reportedly made it clear that he won't be rushed into accepting a deal that's not in Canada's best interests.

On Thursday, the benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index ended down 47.31 points, or 0.29%, at 16,001.71. The index touched a low of 15,987.21 and a high of 16,071.24 intraday.

In company news, K-Bro Linen Inc. (KBL.TO) has announced a dividend of 10.00 cents CDN per common share of the Corporation for the period from September 1 to 30, 2018.

Cequence Energy Ltd. (CQE.TO) has announced the successful completion of its previously announced equity rights offering, which was over-subscribed and raised the maximum available gross proceeds of $8,593,476.

Whitecap Resources Inc. (WCP.TO) has announced a cash dividend of Cdn. $0.027 per common share in respect of September operations.

Lundin Mining Corp. (LUN.TO) is reportedly on the hunt for copper mines and projects. The company is ready to spend about $3 billion on mergers and acquisitions, its incoming chief executive officer is reported to have said in an interview on Thursday.

Asian stocks ended broadly higher on Friday, buoyed by reports that the U.S. and China might hold a fresh round of trade talks.

In economic news from Asia, Chinese industrial output and retail sales figures for August topped forecasts, European stocks rose slightly on Friday amid easing concerns about U.S.-China trade dispute and Turkey's financial woes.

In economic news from Europe, the euro area trade surplus declined to the lowest level in four years in July, falling to a seasonally adjusted EUR 12.76 billion from EUR 16.47 billion in June, data from Eurostat showed.

Meanwhile, the Bank of France has cut its economic growth forecast for this year through 2020 amid the less dynamic and more uncertain external situation. GDP growth would be 1.6% this year, next year and in 2020, the bank said. Previously, the bank projected 1.8% growth for this year and 1.7% expansion in 2019.

Sustained growth momentum is expected to contribute to further decline in the unemployment rate, which was projected at 8.3% by the end of 2020.

Inflation was expected to peak at 2.1 this year, mainly as a result of energy prices. Thereafter, price growth was forecast to slow to 1.7% in 2019 and 1.8% in 2020. Core inflation, which excludes energy and food, was forecast to gradually recover to 1.5 percent by the end of 2020, the bank said in its report.

In U.S. economic releases, data on U.S. retail sales, import price index and exports, all for the month of August, are due at 8:30 AM ET.

The Industrial Production data for the month of August, is due for release at 9:15 AM ET. Data on business sales and business inventories will be out at 10 AM ET, and finally a report on oil rigs count for the week ended September 14, will be released at 1 PM ET.

In commodities, Crude oil futures for October delivery were up $0.30, or 0.44%, at $68.89 a barrel.

Natural gas futures for October were down $0.012, or 0.43%, at $2.805 per million btu.

Gold futures for December were up $1.50, or 0.12%, at $1,209.70 an ounce.

Silver futures for December were down $0.024, or 0.17%, at $14.220 an ounce, while Copper futures for December were down $0.012, or 0.45%, at $2.671 per pound.

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