September 12, 2013 / 12:56 PM / 4 years ago

CANADA STOCKS-TSX may open lower, U.S. jobless data eyed

Sept 12 (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index futures pointed to a flat to slightly lower open on Thursday as focus shifted from Syria to the U.S. Federal Reserve’s monetary stimulus program.

TOP STORIES

* U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry flew into Geneva to hear Russia’s plans to disarm Syria of its chemical weapons and avert U.S.-led military strikes, an initiative that has transformed diplomacy over a two-and-a-half year old civil war.

* Output at the euro zone’s factories fell by much more than expected in July in a sign of the weak demand from European households and the shakiness of the bloc’s economic recovery.

* Japan is considering $50 billion in economic stimulus to cushion the blow of a national sales-tax increase that is meant to rein in the government’s massive debt, people involved in the decisions said.

* Encana Corp : The gas producer signaled a potential sale of dry natural gas assets as it focuses on more-lucrative oil and gas liquids.

* Hudson’s Bay Co reported higher second-quarter sales as strong apparel sales at its Canadian namesake stores offset lower customer traffic at its Lord & Taylor chain in the United States.

MARKET SNAPSHOT

* Canada stock futures traded down 0.27 percent

* U.S. stock futures , , were mixed around -0.03 percent to 0.14 percent

* European shares, were down

COMMODITY PRICE MOVES

* Thomson Reuters-Jefferies CRB Index : 291.1908; fell 0.02 percent

* Gold futures : $1,342; fell 1.61 percent

* US crude : $108.38; rose 0.76 percent

* Brent crude : $112.26; rose 0.68 percent

* LME 3-month copper : $7,064; fell 1.48 percent CANADIAN STOCKS TO WATCH

* BRP Inc : The maker of Ski-Doo snowmobiles, Sea-Doo watercraft and Evinrude outboard motors, posted a bigger second-quarter loss. The net loss widened to C$7.9 million from C$2.9 million a year earlier. Revenue rose 2 percent to C$620.9 million.

* Empire Co Ltd : The company reported a 24 percent fall in first-quarter profit from continuing operations as competition increased and expenses rose due to its acquisition of the Canadian assets of Safeway Inc.

* Travel operator Transat AT Inc reported a three-fold jump in third-quarter adjusted profit but said earnings in the current quarter would likely be weaker on a sequential basis.

ANALYSTS’ RECOMMENDATIONS

Following is a summary of research actions on Canadian companies reported by Reuters.

* Dollarama Inc. : National Bank Financial raises target price to C$89 from C$82 after the company reported second-quarter results that exceeded expectations on all fronts

* Evertz Technologies : Raymond James raises to outperform from market perform; target price to C$17.50 from C$16, says the strong backlog of the company is a turning point

* Lundin Mining Corp : Raymond James raises target price to C$5 from C$4.75 on depreciation of the Canadian dollar

* Madalena Energy Inc : National Bank Financial starts with outperform; target price of C$0.80, says the company could be worth double to where it is trading today based on its total return ON THE CALENDAR

* Major Canadian economic data includes new housing data

* Major U.S. events and data includes import, export, continuing claims, Federal budget

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