June 28 Canada's main stock index looked set to open higher on Friday, helped by reassuring comments from Federal Reserve policymakers and positive Japanese data, but shares of BlackBerry were expected to weigh heavily after it reported weak results.
BlackBerry shares tumbled 20 percent in pre-market trading after it posted an unexpected quarterly operating loss and offered few signs of a long-promised turnaround.
* Japan's consumer prices stopped falling in May and labor demand reached its strongest level in five years, but the Bank of Japan's time frame for achieving a 2 percent inflation target still appears unlikely.
* European leaders agreed on new steps to fight youth unemployment and promote lending to credit-starved small business on Thursday after deals on banking resolution and the long-term EU budget gave their summit a much needed lift.
* Outsourcing and consulting services provider Accenture Plc cut its full-year outlook, citing a pullback in spending by its consulting business clients, after reporting third-quarter revenue below analysts' estimates.
* Canada's broadcast regulator approved BCE Inc's modified bid for Astral Media Inc on Thursday, allowing the telecom company to acquire more of the content it distributes to television, computer and mobile screens.
* Canada stock futures traded up 0.32 percent
* U.S. stock futures , , were up around 0.09 percent to 0.10 percent
* European shares, were down
COMMODITY PRICE MOVES
* Thomson Reuters-Jefferies CRB Index : 278.1319; rose 0.09 percent
* Gold futures : $1,202.4; fell 0.74 percent
* US crude : $97.24; rose 0.2 percent
* Brent crude : $102.95; rose 0.13 percent
* LME 3-month copper : $6,771.25; rose 0.31 percent
CANADIAN STOCKS TO WATCH
* Air Canada : The company said it would terminate a tender offer to buy back certain bonds due to the recent volatility in debt and capital markets. It said in a statement late on Thursday that the market volatility had made refinancing terms unattractive.
* Talisman Energy : The company drilled a dry well near the Gyda field in the Norwegian section of the North Sea, the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate said on Friday, confirming an earlier statement from one of the license partners.
Following is a summary of research actions on Canadian companies reported by Reuters.
* Enerplus Corp : National Bank Financial raises target price to C$20 from C$19, believes the company is now in a much better position offering investors a more sustainable dividend with a deeper inventory of prospects to support a moderate growth strategy.
* EXFO Inc : CIBC raises rating to sector performer from sector underperformer after the company provided a fourth-quarter sales outlook that was in line with expectations.
* Transat AT Inc : CIBC raises rating to sector performer from sector underperformer, says the company is making good headway in reducing its cost structure and upcoming summer results should be good.
ON THE CALENDAR
* Major Canadian economic data includes gross domestic product, producer price index and raw materials prices data
* Major U.S. events and data includes Chicago PMI, current conditions and ECRI weekly index data