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Bay Street Likely To Open Higher As Oil Prices Rebound

Canadian shares are likely to open on a positive note on Thursday, supported by a rebound in crude oil prices and data showing better-than-expected growth in Chinese exports in July.

Still, worries about near-term economic growth due to the ongoing trade spat between the U.S. and China may continue to weigh on sentiment and limit market's upside.

Also, with reports on building permits, housing starts and unemployment due for release on Friday, the mood in the market is likely to remain cautious today.

In economic news today, Canada's new home prices dropped 0.1% for the second consecutive month in June 2019. Markets had forecast prices to remain unchanged. Year-on-Year, prices were down 0.2% in June.

On Wednesday, the benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index ended up 115.73 points, or 0.72%, at 16,265.22. The index scaled a low of 16,064.34 and a high of 16,285.94 in the session.

In company news, Magna International Inc. (MG.TO) reported second-quarter net income of $452 million, down from $626 million last year. Earnings per share, at $1.42 was below an expected $1.54 per share and down from $1.77 in the comparable period. Adjusted earnings per share were $1.59, compared to $1.67 for the second quarter of 2018, the company said.

Canadian Tire Corp. Limited (CTC.TO) has agreed to buy Party City's Canadian business for $174.4 million. Party City is an expert in party supplies with 65 Canadian retail stores in seven provinces.

Brookfield Asset Management Inc. (BAM-A.TO) reported a net income of $399 million or $0.36 per share for the second quarter, down from $680 million or $0.62 per share in the year-ago quarter. Funds from operations for the quarter rose to $1.11 billion or $1.09 per share from $790 million or $0.77 per share in the year-ago quarter.

Manulife Financial Corp. (MFC.TO) reported net income attributable to shareholders of $1.47 billion in the second quarter on a growth in new business in Asia. The insurer earned 73 cents per diluted share for the three months ended June 30, up about 20% from 61 cents per share a year earlier when it earned $1.27 billion.

Asian markets ended higher on Thursday after data showed better-than-expected growth in China's exports in July, and oil prices recovered after a terrible setback in the previous session on hopes producers may reduce supply to support the market.

European stocks were moving higher, lifted by unexpectedly strong export numbers from China.

In commodities, crude oil futures for September were up $1.05, or 2.06%, at $52.14 a barrel.

Gold futures for December were declining $8.70, or 0.58%, at $1,510.90 an ounce.

Silver futures for September were down $0.166, or 0.97%, at $17.030 an ounce, while Copper futures for September were rising $0.0235, or 0.91%, at $2.5945 per pound.

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