November 20, 2012 / 1:47 PM / in 5 years

CANADA STOCKS-TSX may open lower after French credit downgrade

Nov 20 (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index looked set to open lower on Tuesday, weighed by lower commodity prices, which fell after news of France’s credit rating downgrade clouded the outlook for the euro zone.

TOP STORIES

* Moody’s stripped France of its prized triple-A badge on Monday, cutting the sovereign credit rating on Europe’s No. 2 economy by one notch to Aa1 from Aaa, citing an uncertain fiscal outlook and deteriorating economy.

* Euro zone finance ministers are likely to give tentative approval for the next tranche of loans to Greece although the money is unlikely to be disbursed before December and a deal on debt reduction may also require further talks.

* China’s state-owned CNOOC Ltd has accepted management and employment conditions set by the Canadian government to win approval for its $15.1 billion takeover of Nexen Inc, Bloomberg reported on Tuesday, citing two people with knowledge of the matter.

* Germany’s Bundestag lower house of parliament will vote on the release of the latest tranche of aid for Greece next week and Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservatives are confident it will be approved, a senior conservative lawmaker said.

* Shareholders in commodities trader Glencore have overwhelmingly approved its long-awaited $31 billion takeover of miner Xstrata, paving the way for one of the largest tie-ups in the sector to date.

MARKET SNAPSHOT

* Canada stock futures traded down 0.15 percent

* U.S. stock futures , , were mixed around -0.13 percent to 0.13 percent

* European shares, were down

COMMODITY PRICE MOVES

* Thomson Reuters-Jefferies CRB Index : 298.35; fell 0.14 percent

* Gold futures : $1,734; were unchanged

* US crude : $88.86; fell 0.47 percent

* Brent crude : $111.53; fell 0.15 percent

* LME 3-month copper : $7,743.5; fell 0.78 percent

ANALYST RECOMMENDATIONS

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

* ARC Resources Ltd. : Canaccord Genuity ups to buy from hold and raises target to C$27 from C$26 citing improving results from the company’s Montney project, better management of its decline rate and capital efficiency.

* Canadian Satellite Radio Holdings Inc. : Canaccord Genuity raises target to C$6.30 from C$5.60 after the company initiated a quarterly dividend and offered a special dividend.

* Copper Mountain Mining Corp. : Canaccord Genuity starts with buy and target price C$5 on the company’s production growth, exploration potential and attractive valuation.

* Nuvista Energy Ltd. : Canaccord Genuity ups to buy from sell and raises target to C$5.75 from C$5 after the company announced an equity financing programme .

* Partners Real Estate Investment Trust : CIBC cuts target to C$8 from C$8.50 on valuation.

ON THE CALENDAR

* Major Canadian economic data includes wholesale trade

* Major U.S. events and data includes housing starts, building permits and redbook

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