TORONTO, Sept 3 (Reuters) - Toronto's resource-heavy main stock index looked set to rise for an eighth consecutive session on Friday, as commodity prices surged after U.S. jobs data came in stronger than expected.
* U.S. employment fell for a third straight month in August, but the decline was far less than expected and private payrolls growth surprised on the upside, easing pressure on the Federal Reserve to prop up growth. [ID:nN02227856]
* Canadian equity futures <0#SXF:> pointed to a higher open.
* U.S. stock index futures rose on Friday after data showed the decline in employment was far less than expected in August. [.N]
* European shares extended gains. [.EU]
* Stocks in Asia were mixed with the Nikkei rising 1.4 percent on the week, its biggest weekly gain in nearly two months.
* The Thomson Reuters-Jefferies CRB index .CRB, a global commodities benchmark, rose 0.21 percent in early trade.
* U.S. crude oil futures prices bounced to higher ground Friday on a less-than-expected drop in U.S. payroll jobs. [O/R]
* Gold prices fell to a session low at $1,235.80 an ounce on Friday after U.S. non-farm payrolls fell by less than expected in August, boosting the appeal of assets seen as higher risk at the precious metal's expense. [GOL/]
* Copper rose on Friday to near four-month highs, helped by short-covering and falling inventories. [MET/L]
* Goldcorp Inc (G.TO): The world's No. 2 gold producer agreed to buy gold miner Andean Resources Ltd AND.AX for C$3.6 billion, trumping a competing offer from rival Eldorado Gold Corp (ELD.TO). Goldcorp said its cash and share offer, at C$6.50 per share, was expected to close in late 2010 or early 2011 and had been unanimously approved by the boards of directors of both companies. [ID:nSGE6820BF]
* Potash Corp (POT.TO)(POT.N): Chinese officials have ordered state-owned companies to meet with investment bankers to explore potential options to block BHP Billiton's (BHP.N) $39 billion bid for Potash, according to a source with direct knowledge of the matter. [ID:nTOE68206J]
- Meanwhile, The government of Saskatchewan may consider changes to its potash royalty system, in the event of a foreign takeover of Potash Corp, the premier of the western Canadian province said in an interview. [ID:nN02249065]
* Com Dev International Ltd (CDV.TO): The satellite technology company on Thursday said it has cut 5 percent of its workforce, and would take a severance charge of about C$3 million in the fourth-quarter. [ID:nSGE6811C0]
* MagIndustries Corp MAA.TO: The potash explorer said it has received confirmation from the Republic of Congo that the country's National Assembly and the Senate have ratified the Canadian company's proposed Mengo potash project. [ID:nN09158690]
Following is a summary of research actions on Canadian companies reported by Reuters. [RCH/CA]
* Andean Resources AND.TO price target raised to C$6.50 from C$5.30; rating outperform at RBC
* Canadian Western Bank (CWB.TO) price target raised to C$29 from C$27; rating outperform at BMO
* Dundee Reit (D_u.TO) target price raised to C$30 from C$27; rating outperform at Raymond James
* Orleans Energy Ltd OEX.TO target price cut to C$3 from C$3.25; rating outperform at Raymond James
* TD Bank (TD.TO) target price cut to C$80 from C$81; rating outperform at Macquarie
* Victoria Gold Corp (VIT.V) target price raised to C$1.10 from 90 Canadian cents; rating outperform at Raymond James
$1= $1.06 Canadian Reporting by Bangalore newsroom, editing by Jeffrey Hodgson