October 6, 2010 / 12:46 PM / 7 years ago

CANADA STOCKS-TSX may open lower on soft commodities, weak data

Oct 6 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index looked set to open weaker on Wednesday, hurt by a dip in many commodity prices and data showing U.S. private employers unexpectedly cut jobs in September.

FACTORS TO WATCH

* Canadian equity futures <0#SXF:> pointed to a lower open.

* U.S. stock index futures pared gains sharply after the ADP jobs report showed a surprise loss in private sector jobs in September.[.N]

* European shares extended gains for a second straight session, with investors returning to equities on hopes that central banks will do more to boost struggling economies, while strong metals prices boosted miners.[.EU]

* Asian markets rose with the Nikkei gaining 1.8 percent to a two-month closing high while Hong Kong stocks rose an 11-month high in heavy trade.

COMMODITY PRICE MOVES

* The Thomson Reuters-Jefferies CRB index .CRB, a global commodities benchmark, fell 0.12 percent in early trade.

* Crude oil retreated from a five-month high of $83.33 a barrel reached earlier on Wednesday, because of nervousness ahead of the release of U.S. inventory data at 1430 GMT. [O/R]

* Gold rose to a second successive record high, boosted by investors seeking to profit from weakness in the dollar and the U.S. economy, while palladium hit its highest level in nine years. [GOL/]

* Industrial metals paused below multi-month highs,but traders said inflation concerns and heady momentum suggest higher prices will be forthcoming near term.[MET/L]

CANADIAN STOCKS TO WATCH

* Rogers Communications (RCIb.TO): The company said on Tuesday it would pay C$425 million in cash to buy Atria Networks to boost its services to the public sector and small and medium-sized businesses. [ID:nN05214284]

* Bombardier Inc (BBDb.TO): Quebec will award the world’s No. 3 civil aircraft maker a contract worth more than C$1 billion to build nearly 500 subway cars for Montreal, short-circuiting a bidding process that has dragged on for five years. [ID:nN05221180]

* Air Canada ACb.TO: Canada’s largest airline said on Tuesday the percentage of available seats filled with paying passengers rose to a record 82.2 percent last month when consolidated with its regional carrier Jazz JAZ_u.TO. [ID:nSGE6940IC]

* Royal Bank of Canada (RY.TO): The bank’s Swiss private bank aims to double its client assets in the next four years after coming through the crisis without losing assets like some competitors, the unit’s general manager said on Wednesday. [ID:nLDE695109]

ANALYST RECOMMENDATIONS

Following is a summary of research actions on Canadian companies reported by Reuters. [RCH/CA]

* Air Canada ACb.TO price target raised to C$4 from C$2.75 and rating buy at UBS

* Centric Health CHH.TO coverage started with buy rating and target price of C$1.20 at Versant

* Jean Coutu Group Inc. (PJCa.TO) price target raised to C$10.25 from C$10; rating buy at UBS

$1= $1.01 Canadian Reporting by Bangalore Newsroom; editing by Jeffrey Hodgson

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