Jan 6 (Reuters) - Canadian stock index futures pointed to a flat to slightly higher open on Monday as Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke’s upbeat outlook for the U.S. economy overshadowed weak services sector data from China. TOP STORIES
* Growth in China’s services industries slowed in December, a pair of surveys showed, mirroring a slowdown in manufacturing and confirming views that the world’s second-largest economy lost steam at the end of last year.
* German annual inflation probably accelerated slightly in December, albeit remained below the European Central Bank’s euro zone target, data from three federal states suggested.
* Ford Motor Co and its local partners boosted sales in China by nearly 50 percent last year, nudging past Japanese giants Toyota Motor Corp and Honda Motor Co to make big inroads into the world’s largest auto market.
* Boeing’s machinists on Friday narrowly approved a crucial labor contract that secured thousands of jobs and billions of dollars of economic activity for Washington state but will cost workers their pensions.
* Gold producer and explorer Kirkland Lake Gold Inc said it has started a strategic review and is considering the sales of assets or shares, hoping to create value for shareholders after its share price tumbled in 2013.MARKET SNAPSHOT
* Canada stock futures traded 0.14 percent
* U.S. stock futures , , were up around 0.11 percent to 0.2 percent
* European shares, were up COMMODITY PRICE MOVES
* Thomson Reuters-Jefferies CRB Index : 277.9811; rose 0.31 percent
* Gold futures : $1,237.8; fell 0.05 percent
* US crude : $94.35; rose 0.42 percent
* Brent crude : $107.76; rose 0.81 percent
* LME 3-month copper : $7,298.5; fell 0.23 percent ANALYSTS’ RECOMMENDATIONS
Following is a summary of research actions on Canadian companies reported by Reuters.
* Canyon Services Group Inc : RBC raises rating to outperform from sector perform, says well drilling and licensing activity has begun to rise in the deep basin, a key pumping intensive market in Canada, as operators shift capital from less pumping intensive oil plays
* DIRTT Environmental Solutions Ltd : National Bank Financial starts with outperform rating and price target of C$2.55, says the company’s solid balance sheet and partners support growth
* Potash Corp : CIBC raises price target of U.S.-listed stocks to $35 from $33, says the company’s contract negotiations with China are well underway and expected to be signed by late January
* Progressive Waste Solutions Ltd : CIBC raises price target of its U.S.-listed stocks to $28 from $26.50, says the potential New York City contract win would be a positive catalyst for the company ON THE CALENDAR
* Major Canadian economic data includes producer price index and raw materials
* Major U.S. events and data includes ISM non-manufacturing, factory orders and durable goods