June 4, 2014 / 12:52 PM / 3 years ago

CANADA STOCKS-Futures point to lower open, BoC rate decision in focus

(Adds Canadian and U.S. economic data)

June 4 (Reuters) - Canadian stocks looked set to open lower on Wednesday, with the Bank of Canada expected to keep interest rates unchanged.

June futures on the S&P TSX index <0#SXF:> were down 0.14 percent at 0845 ET.

The central bank, which will announce its policy decision at 0900 ET, is expected to hold its key rate at 1 percent and show no sign of changing its neutral stance, even though inflation has jumped to its 2 percent target sooner than expected.

Canada unexpectedly slipped back into a trade deficit in April, data showed on Wednesday, after two months of surplus as imports jumped to a record-high and exports fell, mainly because of lower sales of energy and mining products.

The S&P TSX index rose for a third straight session on Tuesday, driven by gains in the share prices of energy producers and financial companies, as positive economic data from China boosted sentiment.

U.S. stock index futures also pointed to a lower open on Wednesday as data on the labor market came in weaker than expected. Dow Jones Industrial Average e-mini futures were down 0.24 percent at 0845 ET, while e-mini S&P 500 futures were down 0.29 percent and e-mini Nasdaq 100 futures were down 0.34 percent.

(Morning News Call newsletter link.reuters.com/nex49s; The Day Ahead newsletter link.reuters.com/mex49s)

TOP STORIES

Pent-up demand helped drive Canadian auto sales to a monthly record in May, with mass market brands and niche automakers both big winners, an independent auto industry analyst said on Tuesday.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced the appointment of a Quebec judge to the Supreme Court of Canada on Tuesday after the top court rejected his previous appointment earlier this year in a high-profile case.

Deutsche Lufthansa AG said on Tuesday that it met with Bombardier Inc on Monday and assured the Canadian planemaker it still believes in the $4.4 billion CSeries jetliner program despite an engine failure last week.

COMMODITIES AT 0845 ET

Gold futures : $1,247.4; +0.26 pct

US crude : $103.27; +0.61 pct

Brent crude : $109.23; +0.38 pct

LME 3-month copper : $6,760.00; -1.55 pct

ANALYST RESEARCH HIGHLIGHTS

Canadian Pacific Railway : BMO raises rating to outperform from market perform

Brazil Resources Inc : Salman Partners starts with speculative buy rating

Canaccord Genuity : RBC raises price target to C$13 from C$12

U.S. ECONOMIC DATA DUE ON WEDNESDAY

0815 ADP national employment for May: Actual +179,000, prior +220,000

0830 International trade mm for April: Actual -$47.24 bln, prior -$40.4 bln

0830 Productivity revised for Q1: Actual -3.2 pct, prior -1.7 pct

0830 Labor costs revised for Q1: Actual +5.7 pct, prior +4.2 pct

0945 Markit services PMI Final F for May: Prior +58.4

0945 Markit comp final PMI for May: Prior +55.60

1000 ISM non-manufacturing PMI for May: Expected +55.5, prior +55.2

1000 ISM non-manufacturing business activity for May: Expected +60.0, prior +60.9

1000 ISM non-manufacturing employment index for May: Prior +51.3

1000 ISM non-manufacturing new orders index for May: Prior +58.2

1000 ISM non-manufacturing price paid index for May: Prior +60.8

FOR CANADIAN MARKETS NEWS, CLICK ON CODES:

TSX market report

Canadian dollar and bonds report

Reuters global stocks poll for Canada

Canadian markets directory

$1= $1.09 Canadian Reporting by Mononshila Deka in Bangalore; Editing by Ted Kerr

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