CANADA STOCKS-TSX set to open higher on Potash Corp bid

Tue Aug 17, 2010 9:06am EDT
 
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Aug 17 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index was set to open higher on Tuesday, boosted by an unsolicited $38.6 billion bid for Potash Corp of Saskatchewan (POT.TO: Quote), one of the largest and highest profile resource companies listed on the exchange.

Potash Corp said its board rejected the blockbuster bid from BHP Billiton's (BHP.AX: Quote) (BLT.L: Quote), terming it as "grossly inadequate." [ID:nSGE67G0DT]

But the offer raised the prospect of a higher bid for the company and other merger and acquisition deals in Canada's resource sector, which should boost stock prices.

Potash Corp shares jumped 30 percent to $145.25 in pre-market trade on the New York Stock Exchange, well above BHP's offer price of $130 a share.

OTHER FACTORS TO WATCH

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

* U.S. stock index futures rose on Tuesday after bellwether retailers Wal-Mart (WMT.N: Quote) and Home Depot (HD.N: Quote) posted better-than-expected quarterly profits, but Wal-Mart cautioned about the strength of the U.S. consumer. [.N]

* European shares rose on Tuesday as Aegon (AEGN.AS: Quote) pushed insurers higher after the European Union approved its recapitalisation. [.EU]

* Major markets in Asia rose but Nikkei bucked the trend to close at its lowest in more than eight months.   Continued...