Jan 7 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index looked set to open lower on Friday after a weaker-than-expected U.S. employment report hurt investor sentiment and commodity prices, offsetting positive Canadian jobs data.
* Canadian equity futures <0#SXF:> pointed to a softer open.
* U.S. stock index futures turned negative on Friday after government data showed the economy created far fewer jobs than expected in December. [.N]
* The Canadian dollar firmed to a session high against the greenback after domestic December employment data beat expectations. [CAD/]
* Japan’s Nikkei average edged up to a fresh eight-month closing peak while a drop in commodity prices was offset by a strong performance in Chinese equities.
* The Thomson Reuters-Jefferies CRB index .CRB, a global commodities benchmark, fell 0.14 percent in early trade.
* U.S. crude oil futures held gains after the U.S. jobs data. [O/R]
* Gold pared losses after the U.S. jobs data. Earlier they slid 1 percent to a near six-week low in Europe as the dollar hit a four-month high versus the euro. [GOL/]
* Copper prices fell to two-week lows, undermined by talk of tighter monetary policy in top consumers China and the United States and a stronger dollar. [MET/L]
* Canadian Natural Resources Ltd (CNQ.TO): A fire broke out on Thursday at the company’s Horizon Oil Sands facility in northern Alberta, sending three workers to hospital and forcing a production shutdown. [ID:nN06157068]
* Jean Coutu Group (PJCa.TO): The pharmacy chain reported a higher quarterly profit that beat market estimates, and said it is well-positioned to capitalize on the growth in the drugstore retail industry. [ID:nSGE706097]
* Research In Motion RIM.TO The BlackBerry maker wants 18 to 24 months to address security concerns raised by Indian agencies who have been demanding access to its corporate email services, two newspapers reported on Friday. [ID:nSGE70601P]
Following is a summary of research actions on Canadian companies reported by Reuters. [RCH/CA]
* Canaccord Financial Inc (CF.TO) price target raised to C$17 from C$14; rating buy at TD Newcrest
* Canadian Pacific (CP.TO) price target raised to C$77 from C$74 at UBS
* Canadian National Railway (CNR.TO) price target raised to C$76 from C$74.5 at UBS
* Canfor Corp (CFP.TO) price target raised to C$14 from C$12.50 at Raymond James
* Canfor Pulp Products Inc CFX.TO rating raised to outperform rating at Raymond James
* Fibrek Inc FBK.TO price target raised to C$1.30 from C$1 at Raymond James
* International Forest Products IFPa.TO price target raised to C$7 from C$6 at Raymond James
* Rocky Mountain Dealerships (RME.TO) target price raised to C$15.50 from C$15; rating buy at Salman Partners
* Uni Select Inc UNS.TO price target raised to C$35 from C$33; rating buy at TD Newcrest
* Valeant Pharmaceuticals International (VRX.TO) rating cut to hold from buy at TD Newcrest
* West Fraser Timber Co Ltd (WFT.TO) raises price target to C$60 from C$55 at Raymond James
$1= $1.01 Canadian Reporting by Kishan Nair and Bangalore Newsroom; editing by Jeffrey Hodgson