May 5 (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index was set to open higher on Thursday, tracking gains in oil prices as a huge wildfire near Canada’s oil sands region and escalating tensions in Libya stoked concerns of a near-term supply shortage.
June futures on the S&P TSX index were up 0.39 percent at 7:15 a.m. ET.
Canada’s main stock index fell to a two-week low on Wednesday as resource and financial stocks lost ground, while domestic trade data disappointed.
Building permits data is due at 8:30 a.m. ET on Thursday.
Dow Jones Industrial Average e-mini futures were up 0.3 percent at 7:15 a.m. ET, while S&P 500 e-mini futures were up 0.32 percent and Nasdaq 100 e-mini futures were up 0.32 percent.
Manulife Financial Corp, Canada’s biggest life insurer, reported a 45 percent jump in first-quarter earnings, boosted by strong insurance sales in Asia and gains from interest rate movements.
Telus Corp , one of Canada’s three big telecom providers, said it would sell a 35 percent stake in outsourcing service provider Telus International in a deal that values the unit at C$1.2 billion ($934.80 million).
Canadian Natural Resources Ltd , the country’s largest independent petroleum producer, reported a smaller quarterly loss as cost cuts paid off amid a slump in oil prices.
COMMODITIES AT 7:15 a.m. ET
Gold futures : $1,280.10; +1.53 pct
US crude : $45.04; +2.88 pct
Brent crude : $45.66; +2.35 pct
LME 3-month copper : $4,794.00; -1.5 pct
ANALYST RESEARCH HIGHLIGHTS
Gildan Activewear Inc : National Bank Financial raises target price to C$43 from C$42; rating “outperform”
Imperial Oil Ltd : TD Securities raises target price to C$51 from C$47
Russel Metals Inc : TD Securities raises target price to C$21 from C$19.50; rating “hold”
U.S. ECONOMIC DATA DUE ON THURSDAY
0830 Initial jobless claims : Expected 260,000; Prior 257,000
0830 Jobless claims 4- week average: Prior 256,000
0830 Continued jobless claims: Expected 2.133 mln; Prior 2.130 mln
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$1.28) (Reporting by Nikhil Kumar in Bengaluru)
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