Sept 4 (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock index looked set to open lower on Wednesday as the possibility of a U.S. military strike against Syria dragged investor sentiment lower, despite positive economic data from the euro zone and China.
* Euro zone businesses had their best month in over two years in August as orders increased for the first time since mid-2011, a survey showed, suggesting the region’s economy will grow slightly this quarter.
* President Barack Obama won the backing of key figures in the U.S. Congress, including Republicans, in his call for limited U.S. strikes on Syria to punish President Bashar al-Assad for his suspected use of chemical weapons against civilians.
* Growth in China’s services sector hit a five-month high in August, underpinned by optimism over government policy measures, a private survey showed, the latest evidence that the world’s second-largest economy may have avoided a sharp slowdown.
* Dollar General Corp reported a 15 percent rise in second-quarter profit as efforts such as selling more groceries and brand-name products attracted customers to its stores.
* Ryanair, Europe’s biggest budget airline, could miss its full-year profit forecast following a dip in bookings, it said, blaming growing competition and a drop in the value of the British pound.
* Canada stock futures traded down 0.23 percent
* U.S. stock futures , , were down around 0.07 percent to 0.05 percent
* European shares, were down
* Thomson Reuters-Jefferies CRB Index : 292.6052; fell 0.26 percent
* Gold futures : $1,404.2; fell 0.55 percent
* US crude : $107.91; fell 0.58 percent
* Brent crude : $115.15; fell 0.46 percent
* LME 3-month copper : $7,136.75; fell 1.49 percent
* Gabriel Resources Ltd : Roughly 1,000 people gathered in Romania’s capital late on Tuesday for a third day of protests against plans to start an open-cast gold mine in the small Carpathian town of Rosia Montana.
Following is a summary of research actions on Canadian companies reported by Reuters.
* Alimentation Couche-Tard : CIBC raises target price to C$63 from C$60, says the company’s first quarter showed the first signs of stabilization and performance from the Statoil Fuel & Retail acquisition.
* Bank of Nova Scotia : CIBC cuts to sector performer from sector outperformer, says the company’s shares have struggled of late on concerns over emerging markets.
* Dundee International REIT : Canaccord Genuity cuts target price to C$9.75 from C$10.25, says the Deutsche Post retention was strong, but comes at a cost.
* Long Run Exploration Ltd : Canaccord Genuity raises target price to C$6.50 from C$6.25, says that the company’s operational success production growth and upside potential are not currently reflected in its stock price.
* Paladin Labs Inc : Canaccord Genuity raises target price to C$63 from C$61.50 after the company purchased an additional 71.6 million shares of Litha Healthcare from Blackstar Group, increasing its total ownership in Litha from 44.5 percent to 57.7 percent.
* Major Canadian economic data includes exports and imports, trade balance and Bank of Canada rate decision
* Major U.S. events and data includes international trade, Redbook and total vehicle sales