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Global Markets: U.S. attack kills Iranian general

By MarketsFarm

WINNIPEG, Jan. 3 (MarketsFarm) – The following is a glance at the news moving markets in Canada and globally.

– ¬In a United States drone strike at the Baghdad International Airport on Friday, a top Iranian general was killed. General Qassem Soleimani commanded the elite Quds Force, part of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard. He was a key player in Iran’s foreign and military policy, which included unifying militias that pushed back ISIS forces in Iraq in 2015. The strike was ordered by U.S. President Donald Trump, just days after the U.S. embassy in Baghdad was attacked by protestors. Trump accused Soleimani of ordering that attack and accused Quds Force of being a terrorist group. Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei vowed revenge. Shortly after the attack was announced, crude oil prices jumped four per cent.

– A report from the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) released on Thursday, found the pay gap between Canada’s top 100 CEO’s and average workers grew in 2019. Last year, CEO’s earned approximately 227 times more than average workers, an increase of more than 15 per cent from 2018. “Put another way, by 10:09 am on Jan. 2, the average top CEOs will have made as much money as the average Canadian worker will make all year,” CCPA senior economist David Macdonald said to Bloomberg. The CCPA called on the Canadian government to review tax loopholes, focusing on stock options and capital gains.

– Bombardier Inc. said its joint venture in China won a US$427 million contract to build 160 high-speed train cars, the Canadian Press reported on Friday. The cars, which can travel up to 350 km/h, are to be delivered in later this year for use on China’s high-speed rail network. Bombardier and the state-owned CRRC Sifang Rolling Stock Co. Ltd each own 50 per cent in Bombardier Sifang Transportation Ltd (BST). In 2018, BST won contracts to build 288 high-speed rail cars and Bombardier’s rail division has supplied more than 7,500 passenger and rail cars to China.

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