TORONTO, Feb 5 (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock market index looked set to open lower on Friday as weak commodity prices and worries over the financial well-being of some European countries weighed on the market.
Investors will also take time to digest employment data from both sides of the border. Canada’s unemployment rate fell to 8.3 percent in January, its lowest rate since September, from 8.4 percent in December as the economy added 43,000 jobs, Statistics Canada said on Friday. [ID:nN05253705]
Meanwhile U.S. numbers are due out at 830 am (1330 GMT). Analysts in a Reuters poll predicted non-farm payrolls grew by 5,000 in January after an unexpected loss of 85,000 in December. The unemployment rate is expected to edge up to 10.1 percent in January from 10 percent.
The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE notched its steepest percentage drop since early October on Thursday as investor confidence was shaken by intensifying concerns about sovereign debt in some euro zone countries. [ID:nN0442082]
Here is some of the news that may affect the market.
European policymakers scrambled on Friday to reassure markets on the stability of their 16-nation currency bloc as investors shed euro assets for a second day on fears about debt-laden member states like Greece and Portugal.[ID:nSGE61407V]
Gold fell nearly 1 percent to below $1,050 an ounce, its lowest since early November, on Friday as the dollar rose on rising risk aversion due to fears over the fiscal health of peripheral euro zone economies. [ID:nLDE6140TJ]
Oil steadied around $73 per barrel on Friday, consolidating after its biggest one-day fall since July, and as the dollar hit a seven-month high against a basket of currencies. [nSGE61405Q]
The Canadian dollar shot higher against the U.S. currency on Friday, while short-dated government bond prices turned lower, after Canadian jobs data came in almost three times expectations. [ID:nN05245931]
Canada’s Bombardier (BBDb.TO) warned that aircraft deliveries in fiscal 2011 will fall about 17 percent, as orders for its commercial and business aircraft have fallen drastically.[ID:nN05199939]
Aerospace and industrial manufacturer Heroux-Devtek Inc (HRX.TO) posted a third-quarter profit that narrowly missed estimates, hurt by a decline in revenue from its industrial sales segment.[ID:nSGE6140EV]
Brookfield Properties BPO.TO said on Friday its funds from operations fell 14 percent, weighed by softer property conditions and undeployed capital, but sees 2010 FFO above market estimates.[ID:nN04224612]
Following is a summary of research actions on Canadian companies reported by Reuters on Friday. [RCH/CA]
* UBS cuts Shoppers Drug Mart SC.TO price target to C$50 from C$52; Rating Buy
* RBC cuts TMX Group (X.TO) price target to C$31 from C$33; Rating Underperform
* RBC cuts Fortis Inc (FTS.TO) price target to C$30 from C$31; Rating Sector Perform ($1=$1.07 Canadian) (Reporting by Scott Anderson; Editing by Jeffrey Hodgson)