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$1-billion dollar Alberta program to clean up orphan wells to begin May 1, 5,300 jobs expected – Calgary Herald

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Alberta to contribute to program covering commercial rent: Kenney

Meanwhile, Kenney said Alberta is prepared to contribute $67.2 million to the new Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA) program on top of the $267 million coming to Alberta from Ottawa.

The CECRA program will offer loans to small and medium businesses struggling during the pandemic of 50 per cent of monthly commercial rental costs for April, May and June.

The loan will be forgivable if the property owner and tenant come to a rent forgiveness agreement that lowers the eligible business’s rent by 75 per cent for the three months and includes a moratorium on eviction.

The program, administered by the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation, is expected to start in mid-May.

Also announced Friday, former member of parliament James Rajotte has been named Alberta’s senior representative in Washington. Kenney said Rajotte’s job will include making sure the Keystone XL project “gets done” and to work on the coordinated North American energy strategy.

Editor’s note: This story has been updated to correct the types of projects that are eligible for the government program. 

ajoannou@postmedia.com

@ashleyjoannou

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TSX Composite ends strong week on a down note – BNN

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TORONTO — Canada’s main stock index wrapped up a solid week on a down note while U.S. markets were closed for the Independence Day holiday.

Crude oil and gold prices were down a little bit but not enough to “really spook” the market so the Toronto Stock Exchange followed the path set in Europe where investors took some profits after recent gains, said Philip Petursson, chief investment strategist at Manulife Investment Management.

“It’s kind of one of those wishy-washy days where when you don’t have the leader, which is the U.S. equity markets, 1/8so 3/8 the market is searching for direction,” he said in an interview.

Petursson said the market is hitting that third phase of exhaustion after the prior two of a bear market and a sharp rebound.

“In this phase what we’re doing is we’re waiting for the results and it’s not necessarily just the economic results, more importantly its the earnings results or anything that leads to a positive earnings outlook in Q4 or into 2021 to really drive the market to that next leg higher.”

Second-quarter earnings, which start mid-month are expected to be very bad, said Petursson.

“No matter what the earnings look like the market is just going to shrug it off,” he said.

Rather than recent performance, investors are going to be looking for signs in company guidance that “baby steps” are being taken back to normal despite the increase in COVID-19 infections in the United States.

The S&P/TSX composite index closed down 25.65 points at 15,596.75. It ended the week up 2.7 per cent on a rise in oil and gold prices.

The Canadian dollar also appreciated with oil surpassing US$40 a barrel. It traded for 73.72 cents US compared with 73.61 cents US on Thursday.

Petursson expects the loonie will reach 75 to 77 cents as crude rises to US$45 per barrel, gaining to hit about US$60 over some 18 months.

On Friday, the August crude contract was down 33 cents at US$40.32 per barrel and the August natural gas contract was up 1.6 cents at US$1.75 per mmBTU.

Husky Energy Inc. was the weakest performer as its shares dropped 2.6 per cent, followed by Vermilion Energy Inc. at 2.1 per cent and Cenovus Energy Inc. off two per cent.

Nine of the 11 major sectors on the TSX were lower amid low trading because of the U.S. holiday.

Health care, real estate and materials decreased.

The August gold contract was down US$2.70 at US$1,787.30 an ounce and the September copper contract was down 2.75 cents at US$2.72 a pound.

Consumer staples and telecommunications were slightly higher.

The market choppiness should continue, rising one day and then dipping as investors take some profits, Petursson said.

“This is what I expect to happen until the fall where I think we will have a better picture on what the start of 2021 is going to look like, not only with respect to COVID, more importantly to earnings.

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Oil Prices Fall As Demand Outlook Worsens In U.S. – OilPrice.com

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Oil Prices Fall As Demand Outlook Worsens In U.S. | OilPrice.com

Tsvetana Paraskova

Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews. 

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    Oil prices fell early on Friday amid surging new coronavirus infections in the United States, which had market participants worried about the U.S. oil demand recovery trend.

    As of 9:20 a.m. EDT on Friday, WTI Crude was down 1.28 percent at $40.13, and Brent Crude traded down 1.23 percent at $42.61. Prices recovered somewhat later in the afternoon but were still trading about 1% off.

    Oil prices were still headed for a weekly gain this week as low supply from OPEC, encouraging economic data from the U.S. and China, and a drop in U.S. commercial inventories had supported prices earlier this week.

    However, the U.S. reported on Thursday its highest level of new daily coronavirus cases so far—at more than 55,000, raising fears that a surge in infections will dent the gradual oil demand recovery in America, which consumers 20 percent of the world’s daily oil supply.

    Nearly half of the U.S. states have either paused or rolled back the easing of the restrictions, Texas governor Greg Abbot mandated statewide face-covering in public spaces, while Florida reported more than 10,000 coronavirus cases in a new grim record. Related: U.S. Shale Needs To Rethink Its Strategy To Survive

    Earlier this week, oil prices rallied after the EIA reported a draw of 7.2 million barrels in crude oil inventories in the United States in the week to June 26, down from an all-time high level of inventories reached the previous week.  

    A Bloomberg survey of OPEC’s crude oil production in June showed that the cartel’s output fell to a three-decade low of 22.69 million barrels per day (bpd), as Saudi Arabia fulfilled its promise to cut an additional 1 million bpd on top of its quota in the OPEC+ pact.

    Apart from tightening supply, oil prices were supported this week by optimistic economic news from the U.S. and China. In the United States, the economy regained 4.8 million jobs last month, data showed on Thursday, which sent equity and oil markets rallying. In China, the manufacturing sector conditions continued to improve in June, the Caixin China General Manufacturing PMI showed, while the Caixin China General Services survey showed on Friday that China’s services sector activity expanded at its fastest pace in a decade and business confidence improved to a three-year high.  

    By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com

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      Canada's biggest banks join boycott of Facebook platforms – Reuters

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      FILE PHOTO: The Facebook logo is displayed on a mobile phone in this picture illustration taken December 2, 2019. REUTERS/Johanna Geron/Illustration/File Photo

      TORONTO (Reuters) – Canada’s biggest lenders confirmed on Friday they had joined a widespread boycott of Facebook Inc (FB.O) begun by U.S. civil rights groups seeking to pressure the world’s largest social media platform to take concrete steps to block hate speech.

      More than 400 brands have pulled advertising on Facebook in response to the “Stop Hate for Profit” campaign, begun after the death of George Floyd, a Black man who died in police custody in Minneapolis on May 25.

      Canadian lenders Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO), Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD.TO), Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS.TO), Bank of Montreal (BMO.TO), National Bank of Canada (NA.TO) and Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CM.TO) all said they will pause advertising on Facebook platforms in July.

      Desjardins Group, Canada’s largest federation of credit unions, also said on its website on Thursday it will pause advertising on Facebook and Instagram for the month “barring any exceptional situations where we need to communicate with our members or clients.”

      Most cited their commitments to inclusion and diversity.

      Facebook has opened itself up to a civil rights audit and has banned 250 white supremacist organizations from Facebook and Instagram, a spokesman said by email. Its investments in artificial intelligence mean it finds nearly 90% of hate speech it takes action on before users report it, he added.

      BMO said it is continuing its “ongoing dialogue with Facebook on changes they can make to their platforms to reduce the spread of hate speech.”

      RBC said one way to help clients and communities is to stand against “misinformation and hate speech, which only make systemic racism more pervasive.”

      Reporting by Nichola Saminather in Toronto; Editing by Matthew Lewis and Marguerita Choy

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