Futures Gain Muscle Friday

Birchcliff, Corus in Focus

Stock futures pointed to a higher opening for equity markets in Canada on Friday

The S&P/TSX Composite Index gained 38.99 points to conclude business Thursday at 16,286.94

The Canadian dollar inched up 0.02 cents to 79.88 cents U.S. Friday morning.

March futures grew 0.2% Friday.

China's Bitmain Technologies is eyeing bitcoin mining sites in Quebec, as expectations of a potential Chinese crackdown on cryptocurrency mining make the energy-rich Canadian province an attractive alternative.

BMO cut the rating on Birchcliff Energy to market perform from outperform

TD Securities cut the rating on Corus Entertainment to hold from buy


The TSX Venture Exchange tumbled 21.33 points, or 2.3%, Thursday to 889.51


U.S. stock index futures posted sharp gains ahead of Friday's open, as Wall Street pored over strong quarterly results from major companies.

Futures for the Dow Jones Industrials sprang ahead 87 points, or 0.3%, to 25,642

S&P 500 futures gained four points, or 0.1%, to 2,773.50 while futures on the NASDAQ Composite surged 13.25 points, or 0.2%, to 6,739.75

Wells Fargo and J.P. Morgan Chase reported better-than expected quarterly results. BlackRock also posted results that beat expectations.

Markets have been on the rise as of late, after President Donald Trump signed a bill in December to slash the corporate tax rate from 35% to 21%.

Switching to data, retail sales rose 0.4% in December. The consumer price index rose 0.1% last month.

Overseas, Japan’s Nikkei 225 index faded 0.2%, while in Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index jumped 0.9%.

Oil prices dipped 62 cents to $63.18 U.S. per barrel.

Gold prices leaped $10.10 to $1,332.60 U.S. an ounce.