January 21, 2010 / 1:20 PM / 8 years ago

CANADA STOCKS-TSX may open lower on weak commodity prices

TORONTO, Jan 21 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index could retreat further at the open on Thursday as falling prices for Canadian commodities could hurt producers on a stronger U.S. dollar and worries China will take more measures to temper growth.

But losses could be offset by fluctuating U.S. crude oil prices.

The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE may also follow U.S. futures lower ahead of a slew of results, including fourth quarter results from Goldman Sachs (GS.N) [.N].

Canadian stocks closed broadly lower on Wednesday as commodity prices fell on fears that bank lending curbs in China could slash demand, while U.S. earnings reports undermined confidence.

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

CHINA ECONOMY SOARS

China easily beat its 2009 growth target after a blistering fourth-quarter performance that set the stage for further monetary tightening and put it on course to overtake Japan to become the world’s second-largest economy. [ID:nTOE60K011]

STRONGER GREENBACK

The euro hit a five-month low against the dollar on Thursday, weighed down by concerns over Greece and other peripheral euro zone countries, and by data which pointed to possible slower growth in the currency bloc. [FRX]

OIL FLUCTUATES

Oil fluctuated below $78 a barrel on Thursday as worries that China will take further measures to temper its booming economy offset its return to double-digit growth for the first time since 2008. [O/R]

GOLD FALLS

Gold prices fell towards $1,100 an ounce in Europe as the dollar’s rise to a five-month high versus the euro curbed buying of the precious metal as an alternative asset. [GOL/]

VITERRA LOSS

Viterra Inc VT.TO VTA.AX posted a small fourth-quarter loss as the top Canadian grain handler grappled with weak fertilizer margins and declining commodity prices. [ID:nSGE60K0D3]

MDS LOSS NARROWS

MDS Inc MDS.TO reported a smaller quarterly loss as the Canadian health sciences company narrows its focus to nuclear imaging. [ID:nN21196939]

CANADA‘S RESEARCH ROUNDUP

Following is a summary of research actions on Canadian companies reported by Reuters on Thursday. [RCH/CA]

* RBC cuts Telus Corp (T.TO) to sector “perform” from “outperform”

* RBC cuts Manitoba Telecom Services MBT.TO to “underperform” from “perform”

* Raymond James cuts First Uranium Corp FIU.TO to market “perform” from “outperform”

* Raymond James raises Ivanhoe Mines IVN.TO price target to C$8.50 from C$8; keeps “underperform” rating

* CI Capital starts Bombardier Inc (BBDb.TO) with “outperform” rating; price target of C$7

($1=$1.05 Canadian)

Reporting by Claire Sibonney; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama

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