CANADA STOCKS-TSX futures point to higher start, Fed minutes eyed

Wed Mar 19, 2014 8:40am EDT
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(Updates after economic data)

March 19 (Reuters) - Stock futures pointed to a slightly higher opening for Canada's main stock index on Wednesday ahead of the end of the U.S. Federal Reserve's two-day policy meeting, at which the central bank is widely expected to reduce the size of its monthly bond purchase program.

June futures on the S&P TSX index <0#SXF:> were up 0.11 percent at 0830 ET.

The S&P TSX index gained almost 1 percent on Tuesday as investors focused on signs that the crisis in Ukraine will not escalate and as central banker comments at home on slow growth were interpreted to mean interest rates will remain low.

Dow Jones industrial average futures were up 0.09 percent at 0830 ET, while S&P 500 futures were up 0.15 percent and Nasdaq 100 futures were up 0.18 percent.

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Wholesale trade rose by 0.8 percent in January from December as sales rose in all sectors except the motor vehicle and parts industry, Statistics Canada said.

Energy minister Joe Oliver will be sworn in as the country's new finance minister on Wednesday, a government official familiar with the process said, signaling a stay-the-course approach to fiscal policy.   Continued...