August 17, 2016 / 11:42 AM / a year ago

CANADA STOCKS-Futures flat ahead of U.S. Fed minutes

August 17 (Reuters) - Stock futures pointed to a lower opening for Canada's main stock index on Wednesday as investors await the minutes of the U.S. Federal Reserve's July policy meeting for clues on the next interest rate hike.

The Fed is raising expectations for an interest rate rise this year, even as early as next month, despite weak U.S. economic growth in the first half of 2016.

Oil prices slipped for the first time in a week as investors weighed the success of potential talks among top oil exporters to reduce output.

September futures on the S&P TSX index were down 0.06 percent at 7:15 a.m. ET.

Canada's main stock index fell on Tuesday as worries about elevated valuations and higher U.S. interest rates offset a rally in oil prices.

Dow Jones Industrial Average e-mini futures were down 0.12 percent at 7:15 a.m. ET. S&P 500 e-mini futures were down 0.07 percent and Nasdaq 100 e-mini futures were down 0.03 percent.

(Morning News Call newsletter link.reuters.com/nex49s ; The Day Ahead newsletter link.reuters.com/mex49s)

TOP STORIES

Canada's Performance Sports Group Ltd said it was facing an investigation by U.S. and Canadian securities regulator, two days after the sports equipment maker said it was conducting an internal probe into its financials.

Canadian convenience store operator Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc is in the lead to acquire CST Brands Inc, a U.S.-based convenience store retailer, according to two sources familiar with the matter.

Harmony Gold's chief executive said that the South African gold producer, which plans to expand in Africa, could assess Barrick Gold's assets in Acacia.

ANALYST RESEARCH HIGHLIGHTS

Valeant Pharmaceuticals : Morgan Stanley upgrades to "overweight" from "equal weight"

Amaya Inc : Dundee raises target price to C$26 from C$24; rating "buy"

Cargojet Inc : RBC raises target price to C$41 from C$38; rating "outperform"

Mandalay Resources Corp : Desjardins cuts target price to C$1.70 from C$1.95

COMMODITIES AT 7:15 a.m. ET

Gold futures : $1342; -0.63 percent

US crude : $46.22; -0.77 percent

Brent crude : $48.86; -0.75 percent

LME 3-month copper : $4777; -0.71 percent

U.S. ECONOMIC DATA DUE ON WEDNESDAY

13:15 US Fed O/N Repo rate: Prior 0.25 pct

FOR CANADIAN MARKETS NEWS, CLICK ON CODES:

TSX market report

Canadian dollar and bonds report

Reuters global stocks poll for Canada

Canadian markets directory ($1 = C$1.29) (Reporting by Sai Sharanya Khosla in Bengaluru; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)

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