Toronto stocks to follow Europe, commodities down

Tue Feb 5, 2008 9:10am EST
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TORONTO Feb 5 (Reuters) - The Toronto Stock Exchange's main index was set to dip on Tuesday as fears over a slowing U.S. economy and lower commodity prices were seen trumping some positive corporate results from Husky Energy (HSE.TO: Quote) and CGI Group (GIBa.TO: Quote).

Husky, Canada's No. 3 oil producer and refiner, reported a doubling of fourth quarter profit, beating expectations. For details, see: [nN05652572]

CGI, which provides outsourcing and information technology, reported a 66 percent jump in first quarter profit. For details, see: [nN0516882]

However, the overall TSX, which is heavy on resource issues, could follow the prices of commodities lower.

U.S. crude was off 77 cents at $89.25 a barrel, still under pressure from expectations that demand will decline as the U.S. economy slows.

With the exception of platinum, precious and base metals were also lower on Tuesday, which could undercut the heavyweight TSX materials sector.

In that sector, a Barrick Gold (ABX.TO: Quote) official told a mining conference in Cape Town the company expects its Buzwagi mine in Tanzania to reach production next year, at cash costs under $300 an ounce.

Toronto-based Barrick is the world's biggest gold producer. For details, see: [nL05274991]

Elsewhere, European stocks followed Asian markets lower, setting the stage for a soft start in North America.   Continued...