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Bay Street Likely To Open Lower

The Canadian stock market is likely to open with a negative bias on Friday, tracking weakness in global markets amid U.S.-China trade tensions and reacting to weak employment and housing data.

According to the data released this morning, the Canadian economy lost 24.2 thousand jobs in July 2019 after shedding 2.2 thousand in the previous month and compared with market expectations of a 12.5 thousand gain. Meanwhile, full-time employment in Canada decreased by 11.60 in July 2019.

The unemployment rate in Canada rose to 5.7% in July from 5.5% in the previous month and compared with market expectations of 5.5%.

Meanwhile, the seasonally adjusted annual rates of housing starts in Canada dropped 9.6% from a month earlier to 222,013 units in July 2019, beating market expectations of 203,500.

The value of building permits in Canada was down 3.7% from a year ago to C$ 8.0 billion in June 2019, following a downwardly revised 12.2% slump in the prior month and against market expectations of a 1.5% rise.

On Thursday, the benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index ended up 139.31 points, or 0.86%, at 16,404.53.

In company news, Enerplus Corporation (ERF.TO) reported second-quarter 2019 adjusted net income of $74.3 million ($0.32 per share) compared to $72.5 million ($0.30 per share) in the previous quarter. The company has raised its average annual production and capital spending guidance for the full-year 2019.

Hydro One Ltd. reported a near 23% drop in second-quarter profit to $155 million, compared to the same period last year, and attributed the decline to higher weather-related costs for vegetation control and storm-related power restoration.

Clarke Inc. (CKI.TO) and Holloway Lodging Corporation (HLC.TO) announced that they have entered into an arrangement agreement pursuant to which Clarke will acquire all of the common shares of Holloway that it does not currently own.

Asian markets ended mixed on Friday as traders made cautious moves amid lingering trade worries and reacted to crucial economic data from China and Japan.

European stocks were drifting lower amid U.S.-China trade worries and heightened political uncertainty in Italy.

In commodities, crude oil futures for September were up $0.70, or 1.33%, at $53.24 a barrel.

Gold futures for December were up marginally at $1,510.00 an ounce.

Silver futures for September were down $0.016, or 0.01%, at $16.920.00 an ounce, while Copper futures for September were gaining $0.0060, or 0.23%, at $2.6135 per pound.

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