March 13, 2009 / 12:54 PM / 10 years ago

CANADA STOCKS-Bank optimism may help TSX; jobs data weak

TORONTO, March 13 (Reuters) - Toronto’s key stock index could open higher on Friday, after surging to its highest close in more than three weeks the previous session, tracking world stocks on hopes of stabilization in the U.S. banking system.

World stocks were on track on Friday for one of their largest weekly gains in 20 years for more see [ID:nLD664043], while Wall Street looked set to open higher. [ID:nN13390458]

The Toronto market could see some pressure, however, after government data showed Canada’s economy lost more jobs than expected in February and the unemployment rate shot up to its highest since 2003. [ID:nN13253705]

The S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE on Thursday ended the session up 271.25 points, or 3.39 percent, at 8,282.27, which marked its highest close since Feb. 17.

Here is some news that could affect the market:


Canada’s economy lost more jobs than expected in February as the global downturn triggered widespread layoffs, another sign the country’s recession may be more severe than many previously thought. [ID:nN13253705]


Financial issues, which rallied this week on optimism about stabilization in the U.S. banking sector, may see another rise on Friday after Citigroup (C.N) Chairman Richard Parsons told Reuters the bank does not need any more government capital injections and expressed confidence Citi would remain in private hands. [ID:nN13426253]


Canadian gold producer Gammon Gold Inc said it proposed to buy smaller rival Capital Gold Co CGC.TO for about $150.5 million in stock to gain access to its El Chanate gold property in Sonora, Mexico. [ID:nBNG435331]


Oil rises toward $48 a barrel ahead of a meeting in Vienna on Sunday of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries. [ID:nSP382476]


Gold struggles higher after dipping in Europe on Friday as stronger equities decreased gold’s appeal as a safe refuge [ID:nLD509689], while base metals were largely higher. [ID:nLD134161]


Desjardins raises Corriente Resources CTQ.TO price target to C$6 from C$4.50 [ID:nWNAB3759], while Raymond James raises Silver Wheaton SLW.N price target to $13 from $12.60. For more research please see: [ID:nBNG461638]


Pacific Energy said it obtained creditor protection in Canada after filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy earlier this month, adding that the decline in crude oil prices made it difficult to pay its debt. [ID:nBNG153347]


Mining costs, which were the industry’s biggest headache up until a year ago, are now a bright spot for a sector more concerned with volatile demand and tight financing markets, top executives told the Reuters Global Mining and Steel Summit this week. [ID:nN12391917] ($1=$1.28 Canadian) (Reporting by Jennifer Kwan; Editing by James Dalgleish)

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