CANADA STOCKS-Mixed open eyed for TSX; banks in focus

Fri Mar 19, 2010 8:41am EDT
 
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TORONTO, March 19 (Reuters) - Toronto's main stock index could open mixed on Friday as soft commodity prices pressure heavily weighted resource issues, while bank shares could get a lift after British lender Lloyds Banking Group (LLOY.L: Quote) said it would return to profitability this year.

The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE could take its cue from global markets, where European shares rose modestly on Friday, lifted by gains in banking stocks, but concerns over Greece's large debt burden remained. [MKTS/GLOB] [.N]

Here is some news that could influence stock prices:

CANADA CORE INFLATION JUMPS

Canada's annual core inflation rate unexpectedly rose above 2 percent in February, adding pressure on the Bank of Canada to raise interest rates later this year and pushing the currency higher. [ID:nN19500487]

C$ RISES AFTER CPI DATA

The Canadian dollar rose sharply on Friday after data showed Canada's annual core inflation rate unexpectedly rose in February, increasing pressure on the Bank of Canada to raise interest rates. [CAD/]

NEXEN INC NXY.TO

Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L: Quote) and Canadian oil explorer Nexen Inc said they had made a "significant" discovery in the Gulf of Mexico, the latest in a string of big finds in the Gulf in the past year. [ID:nLDE62I10G]   Continued...