September 23, 2009 / 2:36 PM / 9 years ago

CANADA STOCKS-TSX little changed ahead of Fed statement

 * TSX up 3.72 points, or 0.03 percent, at 11,589.45
 * Market focus on U.S. Federal Reserve statement  (Adds details, quote)
 By Jennifer Kwan
 TORONTO, Sept 23 (Reuters) - Toronto’s main stock index was little changed on Wednesday morning after rallying in the previous session, with investors reluctant to make moves before a key U.S. Federal Reserve policy statement later in the day.
  Big names on the upside included oil company EnCana Corp (ECA.TO), up 0.4 percent at C$62.64, and BlackBerry maker Research In Motion RIM.TO, which climbed 2.1 percent to C$92.75.
 On the downside, Canadian Natural Resources sank 1.3 percent to C$75.63, while Suncor Energy (SU.TO) fell 1.1 percent to C$38.98.
 The market will probably be in a wait and hold pattern until the U.S. central bank releases its policy statement, said Gareth Watson, Canadian equity advisor at ScotiaMcLeod.
 The market expects that in its statement, due around 2:15 p.m. (1815 GMT), the U.S. central bank will hold rates near zero percent and take note of an improving economy, while cautioning that high unemployment puts recovery at risk. [ID:nN23390829]
 “The language of the statement released by the Fed is going to determine whether we move higher or give back some gains we had yesterday,” Watson said. He noted the market is looking for any language that reaffirms talk the recession is likely over, as well any clues on the health of consumer spending.
 “Without the consumer we’re not going to get sustainability in this rally we’ve had,” Watson said.
  Bank of Canada Governor Mark Carney said late on Tuesday the domestic economy has started the slow climb to recovery but only because of emergency measures taken by the government and the central bank, with business activity still lagging. [ID:nN22355648]
 At 10:06 a.m. (1406 GMT), the S&P/TSX composite index .GSPTSE was up 3.72 points, or 0.03 percent, to 11,589.45. On Tuesday, the index finished 1.41 percent higher.
 The index’s key energy sector fell 0.32 percent as the price of oil fell toward $70 a barrel. [O/R] The mining-heavy materials group climbed 0.21 percent even though underlying metals prices were weaker. [GOL/] [MET/L]
 Six of the index’s main groups were higher, helping the market maintain its recent run-up of some 50 percent from five-year lows hit in March.
 ($1=$1.07 Canadian)  (Reporting by Jennifer Kwan; editing by Peter Galloway)                                      

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