May 18, 2012 / 1:07 PM / 5 years ago

CANADA STOCKS-TSX set to open higher, helped by gold miners

May 18 (Reuters) - Gold miners look set to help lead Canada’s resource heavy main stock index higher at the open on Friday, as the precious metal surged for two consecutive sessions, though growing worries over developments in the euro zone may cast a shadow on possible gains.

TOP STORIES

* World shares slid and German borrowing costs hit record lows on Friday as a deepening Spanish banking crisis, uncertainty about Greece’s future in the euro zone and lackluster U.S. data bolstered safe-haven assets.

* Investors are bracing for Facebook’s Wall Street debut after the world’s No.1 online social network raised about $16 billion in one of the biggest initial public offerings in U.S. history.

* The European Commission and the European Central Bank are working on scenarios in case Greece has to leave the euro zone, EU trade commissioner Karel De Gucht has said.

* Leaders of major industrial economies meet this weekend to try to tackle a full-blown crisis in Europe where fears are growing that Greece could leave the euro zone bloc, threatening the future of the common currency.

* Canadian inflation was slightly stronger than expected in April, pushed higher partly by gasoline prices, but the annual rate matched the Bank of Canada’s target of 2.0 percent, up from 1.9 percent in March, Statistics Canada data showed on Friday.

* Global insurers Manulife Financial Corp, Metlife and Prudential Financial Corp are among suitors expected to place first-round bids to buy ING Groep’s Asia life insurance unit in a deal worth about $6.5 billion to $7 billion, sources familiar with the matter said.

MARKET SNAPSHOT

* Canada stock futures traded up 0.7 percent

* U.S. stock futures , , were up around 0.5 percent

* European shares, were down

COMMODITY PRICE MOVES

* Thomson Reuters-Jeffries CRB Index : 290.68; rose 0.39 percent

* Gold Futures : $1,590.8; rose 1.04 percent

* US Crude : $92.79; rose 0.25 percent

* Brent Crude : $106.96; fell 0.49 percent

* LME 3-month Copper : $7,745; rose 1.26 percent

CANADIAN STOCKS TO WATCH

* SMART Technologies Inc. : The company, which makes digital whiteboard, posted a fourth-quarter loss as it sold fewer interactive displays, and forecast dim prospects for 2013 citing uncertainty in education markets.

* Silvercorp Metals Inc. : The China-focused silver miner reported on Thursday a lower fourth-quarter profit as higher production costs offset increased sales volumes and better realized metal prices.

ANALYST RECOMMENDATIONS

Following is a summary of research actions on Canadian companies reported by Reuters.

* Artis REIT : Canaccord Genuity raises target price to C$17.50, and said the company is growing into a larger, higher-quality REIT with a track record of successful acquisitions.

* Canadian Pacific Railway : Citigroup raises to buy, on hopes of turnaround, after resignation of former CEO Fred Green

* Enbridge : Canaccord Genuity raises to buy from hold on the company’s direct participation in Enbridge Energy Partners LP projects

* Boardwalk REIT : National Bank raises price target to C$63.75 from C$59.75 on strong quarterly results, and said the company is well-positioned for rental rate growth

ON THE CALENDAR

* Major Canadian economic data includes inflation for April

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