CANADA STOCKS-TSX may open higher on robust U.S. earnings
Jan 17 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index looked set to open higher on Thursday, as encouraging corporate earnings from major Wall Street companies buoyed investor sentiment.
* UnitedHealth Group Inc, the largest U.S. health insurer, said that fourth-quarter profit rose from a year earlier, exceeding the outlook it gave in November, and also backed its previous forecast for earnings and revenue in 2013.
* Rio Tinto sacked chief executive Tom Albanese and revealed a $14 billion writedown in connection with his two most significant acquisitions, the Alcan aluminium group and Mozambican coal.
* Sun Life Financial Inc and Malaysian state investor Khazanah will buy 98 percent of Aviva Plc's Malaysian insurance joint venture with lender CIMB for C$586 million.
* Improved investor sentiment toward struggling southern European economies helped Spain cut debt costs at an auction, allowing it to reach nearly 9 percent of the year's longer term borrowing needs.
* Airlines scrambled to rearrange flights as Europe, Japan, Qatar and India joined the United States in grounding Boeing Co's 787 Dreamliner passenger jets while battery-related problems are investigated.
MARKET SNAPSHOT Continued...