TORONTO, Feb 24 (Reuters) - Canada’s main stock market index may open lower for a third day on Wednesday as weak gold and energy prices weigh on the commodity-laden index.
Investors are also expected to remain cautious ahead of Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke’s semiannual testimony on monetary policy and the state of the economy before the U.S. House Financial Services Committee.
Toronto’s main stock index fell for a second straight session on Tuesday, knocked down by weak U.S. consumer confidence data that cast doubt on the strength of the economic recovery.[ID:nN23120756]
Here is some of the news that may affect the market.
Gold fell more than 1 percent to $1,089.75 an ounce as prices slipped below $1,100, sparking technical selling, and amid caution ahead of Federal Reserve chair Ben Bernanke’s congressional testimony later on Wednesday. [ID:nLDE61N0Y5]
Oil shed over 30 cents to near $78.50 on Wednesday as investors fretted over signs of weakness in any global recovery and waited for U.S. figures later for clearer indications on crude inventories and imports. [ID:nSGE61N078]
Canam Group Inc CAM.TO reported quarterly earnings that narrowly missed analysts’ estimates as the Canadian construction products company’s revenue fell by a third due to slowdown in non-residential construction in North America and lower raw materials costs. [ID:nN23126956]
Centerra Gold (CG.TO) on Tuesday said its fourth-quarter profit more than tripled, helped by higher production and a 40-percent jump in the price it received for its gold.[ID:nN23127359]
Finning International Inc (FTT.TO), the world’s largest Caterpillar (CAT.N) equipment dealer, on Tuesday said it returned to fourth-quarter profit after taking a big charge a year earlier.[ID:nN23109078]
The North Sea Buzzard oilfield, Britain’s largest, has started to increase output after a period of much lower production, a source at a company with equity crude oil from the field said on Wednesday. [ID:nLDE61N1GG]
Following is a summary of research actions on Canadian companies reported by Reuters on Wednesday. [RCH/CA]
* RBC raises George Weston (WN.TO) price target to C$75 from C$74; Rating Sector Perform
* Barclays raises Agnico-Eagle Mines (AEM.N) price target to $41 from $38; Rating Underweight
* Collins Stewart cuts Suncor Energy Inc (SU.TO) price target to C$35 from C$38; Rating Hold ($1=$1.06 Canadian) (Reporting by Scott Anderson; Editing by Theodore d’Afflisio)