January 28, 2015 / 12:33 PM / 3 years ago

CANADA STOCKS-Futures indicate higher start; Fed in focus

Jan 28 (Reuters) - Stock futures pointed to a higher start for Canada’s main stock index on Wednesday ahead of the U.S. Federal Reserve’s statement, in which it is expected to signal it remains on track to begin raising interest rates later this year.

March futures on the S&P TSX index were up 0.20 percent at 7.15 a.m. ET.

No major economic data is due on Wednesday.

Canada’s main stock index extended gains to a fifth straight session on Tuesday as weakness in the U.S. dollar helped drive up prices of commodities such as oil and gold, boosting shares of natural resource producers.

Dow Jones Industrial Average e-mini futures were down 0.11 percent at 7.15 a.m. ET, while S&P 500 e-mini futures were up 0.16 percent and Nasdaq 100 e-mini futures were up 0.96 percent. (Morning News Call newsletter link.reuters.com/nex49s; The Day Ahead newsletter link.reuters.com/mex49s)

TOP STORIES

Cenovus Energy Inc, Canada’s No. 2 independent oil producer, cut its capital spending budget for 2015 in response to the slump in crude oil prices.

Canada’s Bombardier Inc expects to receive safety certification from China for its high-speed trains as early as next month, providing a springboard for more orders, the firm’s top executive in the country said.

Canadian National Railway Co reported better-than-expected fourth-quarter earnings on Tuesday and boosted its dividend, but lagged its main Canadian rival when it came to a key efficiency measure.

Royal Bank of Canada, the country’s biggest lender, said on Tuesday that it would cut its prime lending rate by 15 basis points, becoming the first of Canada’s big banks to trim borrowing costs nearly a week after the central bank stunned markets with a rate cut.

COMMODITIES AT 7.15 a.m. ET

Gold futures : $12,91.70; unchanged

US crude : $45.54; -1.49 pct

Brent crude : $49.40; -0.40 pct

LME 3-month copper : $5,464.50; +0.80 pct

ANALYST RESEARCH HIGHLIGHTS

Canadian National Railway Co : UBS, Barclays, CIBC raise price targets

Metro Inc : National Bank Financial, Barclays and others raise price targets

Genworth MI Canada Inc : CIBC cuts price target to C$36 from C$40

U.S. ECONOMIC DATA DUE ON WEDNESDAY

1400 Fed funds target rate: Prior 0.25 pct

FOR CANADIAN MARKETS NEWS, CLICK ON CODES:

TSX market report

Canadian dollar and bonds report

Reuters global stocks poll for Canada

Canadian markets directory ($1= C$1.24) (Reporting by Abhinav Kaul in Bengaluru; Editing by Kirti Pandey)

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