Bay Street May Open Weak; Energy Stocks In Focus

(RTTNews) - The Canadian stock market may open on a negative note, tracking weakness in global markets amid an escalation in tensions in the Middle East after a U.S. airstrike killed top Iranian military personnel, Qassem Soleimani.

While the U.S. has stated that it killed General Soleimani for the recent attacks on the U.S. embassy in Baghdad, Iran has reportedly said there would be "revenge" for Soleimani's death.

Crude oil prices have risen sharply following the developments. Gold prices have soared too. While this could trigger some buying in energy and materials shares, investors may choose to use any surge in prices to trim down positions.

On Thursday, the benchmark S&P/TSX Composite Index ended up 36.52 points, or 0.21%, at 17,099.95. The index, which rose to 17,164.55 in early trades, touched a low of 17,043.47 in the session.

In company news, Cott Corporation (BCB.TO) announced that Eden Springs, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the company, has acquired the Watercooler Gigant business of Leylines B.V., a leading e-commerce platform in the Netherlands.

SSR Mining Inc. (SSRM.TO) announced that it has elected to exercise its equity participation right pursuant to its agreement with SilverCrest Metals Inc. (SIL.TO) to purchase 1,819,074 common shares of SilverCrest at CS$7.28 per share, the same price per share as the bought deal public offering announced by SilverCrest in early December.

Asian stocks turned in a mixed performance on Friday amid an escalation in geopolitical tensions after a U.S. airstrike killed top Iranian military personnel, Qassem Soleimani.

European stocks are drifting lower on geopolitical tensions after the U.S. Department of Defense said in a statement that it had killed Qassem Soleimani, who it alleged was behind the recent attacks on the U.S. embassy in Baghdad. The Department of Defense also said that the "strike was aimed at deterring future Iranian attack plans."

Iranian leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said there would be "revenge" for Soleimani's death.

In commodities, West Texas Intermediate crude oil futures for February are up $2.25, or about 3.7%, at $63.43 a barrel.

Gold futures for February are rising $20.60, or 1.35%, at $1,548.70 an ounce.

Silver futures for March are gaining $0.174, or 0.96%, at $18.220 an ounce, while Copper futures for are down $0.0560, or 1.98%, at $2.7690 per pound.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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