CANADA STOCKS-Toronto stocks could be set for mixed open

Thu Apr 16, 2009 7:59am EDT
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TORONTO, April 16 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index could get off to a mixed start on Thursday given a combination of higher oil prices, better-than-expected earnings from a big U.S. bank and the bankruptcy of a major U.S. mall owner.

Higher oil prices stand to benefit the energy sector and help that influential group snap a two-session skid.

And a rally in overseas stocks on news that U.S. bank JPMorgan Chase JPM.N reported better-than-expected earnings could also carry over into the North American session and offer a boost to the influential financials index. [ID:nN16542451]

But news that General Growth Properties Inc GGP.N, the second largest U.S. mall owner, filed for bankruptcy protection on Thursday, may rattle investor sentiment and crimp any gains or keep the index pinned lower. [ID:nLG285644]

Investors will also key in on the February manufacturing sales report for Canada due at 8:30 a.m. (1230 GMT). That will be followed by the more key domestic consumer price index data for March on Friday.

The S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE eked out a gain of 14.49 points to close at 9,246.11 on Wednesday as financials made a late push and offset weak resource issues.

Here is some of the news that may affect the index:


Oil edged towards $50 a barrel on Thursday, but gains were limited as mixed data from China and the United States reminded investors that any signs of economic recovery were still only tentative. [ID:nSP405814]   Continued...