Global Markets: Israel, Hamas agree to ceasefire

WINNIPEG – The following is a glance at the news moving markets in Canada and globally.

– After 11 days of fighting, both Israel and Palestinian militant group Hamas have agreed to a ceasefire which took effect early this morning. Both parties claimed victory in the conflict and Palestinians celebrated in the streets of Gaza and East Jerusalem when the ceasefire took effect at 2 a.m. Meanwhile, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is receiving criticism from his own government, telling him the conflict ended too early. According to the Gaza Health Ministry, at least 243 Palestinians were killed in the conflict. Twelve Israelis also died in the fighting.

– Canadian Pacific Railway (CP) was informed earlier today by Kansas City Southern’s (KCS) board that the U.S.-based railway will terminate the former’s friendly takeover bid, according to BNN Bloomberg. The decision paves the way for KCS to accept a competing offer from Canadian National Railway (CN Rail) worth US$29.8 billion. Last March, CP announced an agreement to purchase KCS for US$25.2 billion before CN Rail made a rival proposal last month.

– In an effort to cool Canada’s housing market, it was announced on Thursday the federal government is implementing tighter mortgage qualification rules. As of June 1, home buyers have to prove they can afford the new minimum rate of 5.25 per cent, compared to the previous minimum of 4.79 per cent. Bank of Canada Governor Tiff Macklem cautioned on Thursday that Canadians should neither expect historically low interest rates nor sharp gains in housing prices to continue for much longer.

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