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July 8 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index could open higher on Thursday as stronger crude oil and metal prices lift energy and mining stocks and firmer U.S. data boosts investor sentiment.
Wall Street also looked set to open higher after U.S. data showed first-time claims for jobless benefits fell more than expected last week. [.N]
Canadian equity futures also pointed to a higher start. <0#SXF:>
European shares rose, with the banking sector higher after the European Central Bank and the Bank of England held their key interest rates unchanged.
Major Asian markets were up, with Nikkei jumping 2.76 percent, but the Shanghai Composite Index bucked the trend on profit-taking.
Here is some news that could affect stock prices:
Oil rose to around $75 per barrel, supported by a rally in stock markets and an industry report showing a sharp fall in crude oil inventories in the United States, the world's biggest oil consumer. [O/R]
Copper rose to a one-week high before partly erasing gains, as a rally in global equities boosted risk appetite, but worries over economic growth in top metals consumer China, capped gains. [MET/L]
Gold held above $1,200 an ounce, having recovered from six-week lows after consumers were enticed back into the market, although gains were likely to be tempered by improving optimism over the global economy. [GOL/]
Global miner Rio Tinto's (RIO.AX) (RIO.L) biggest shareholder, China's Chinalco, is considering buying a stake in the massive Oyu Tolgoi copper-gold project in Mongolia, which is partly owned by Ivanhoe Mines (IVN.TO) and Rio Tinto, according to a regulatory filing. [ID:nSGE6660JX]
Canadian cable and telecommunications company Cogeco Inc (CGO.TO) and its subsidiary Cogeco Cable Inc (CCA.TO) reported higher-than-expected quarterly profit, driven by strength in its cable business. [ID:nSGE6670GB]
Network equipment maker Sandvine Corp (SVC.TO) on Thursday posted a second-quarter profit as expenses fell. [ID:nSGE6670FR]
MDS Nordian MDS.TO, one of the world's biggest suppliers of medical isotopes, is looking for ways to broaden its sources after the disruption caused by the closure of Canada's Chalk River nuclear plant, its Chief Executive Steve West said in an interview. [ID:nN07109634]
The dormant Chalk River nuclear facility in Eastern Ontario that once supplied a third of the world's medical isotopes will restart this month after regulators agreed on Wednesday it had fixed safety problems. [ID:nN07165657]
Soft drinks maker Cott Corp (BCB.TO) agreed on Wednesday to buy closely held Cliffstar Corp, a leading U.S. maker of private label beverages, in a $500 million cash deal. [ID:nN07166976]
Gold miner Kirkland Lake Gold Inc KGI.TO posted a quarterly loss on Thursday, hurt by certain project work related issues, which led to gold production falling 7 percent. [ID:nSGE6670DU]
Telecom equipment maker DragonWave Inc DWI.TO DRWI.N on Wednesday reported a first-quarter profit, helped by higher sales in North America, but said it expects lower second quarter revenue. [ID:nSGE6660JG]
Following is a summary of research actions on Canadian companies reported by Reuters. [RCH/CA]
* Dragonwave Inc. DWI.TO price target cut to C$4.75 from C$7.50 rating market perform Raymond James
* Transglobe Apartment REIT TGA_u.TO started with sector perform rating, price target of C$10 RBC
* UTS Energy Corp. UTS.TO price target raised to C$3.75 from C$3 keeps outperform rating Raymond James
* Xtreme Coil (XDC.TO) price target cut to C$3.40 from C$3.75, rating sector perform National Bank Financial (Reporting by Bangalore newsroom, editing by Savio D'Souza and Jeffrey Hodgson)