Jan 24 Canada's main stock index looked set to
open higher on Thursday, as manufacturing data from China
revived hopes of recovery in the world's second largest economy.
* Growth in Chinese manufacturing accelerated to a two year
high and a buoyant Germany took the euro zone economy a step
closer to recovery, business surveys showed.
* Agrium raised its fourth-quarter earnings
forecast, as strong grain and oilseed prices spurred demand for
its fertilizer products over the fall season in North America.
* Diversified U.S. manufacturer 3M Co reported a 3.9 percent
rise in profit, on solid growth in sales of its products, which
range from Post-It notes to films used in television screens.
* Lockheed Martin Corp, the Pentagon's supplier, said that it
expected higher earnings this year despite weakening sales,
citing a record backlog and continued efforts to cut costs.
* Commerzbank, Germany's second-biggest lender, plans to cut
up to 12 percent of staff by 2016 in a bid to slash costs and
revamp its ailing retail business.
* Finnish mobile phone maker Nokia said will axe its annual
dividend payment for the first time in over 20 years, to shore
up its finances as sales fall.
* Canada stock futures traded flat
* U.S. stock futures , , were mixed
around -1.26 percent and 0.11 percent
* European shares, were mixed
COMMODITY PRICE MOVES
* Thomson Reuters-Jefferies CRB Index : 300.9274;
fell 0.05 percent
* Gold futures : $1,681.7; fell 0.27 percent
* US crude : $95.59; rose 0.38 percent
* Brent crude : $112.78; fell 0.02 percent
* LME 3-month copper : $8,067; fell 0.44 percent
CANADIAN STOCKS TO WATCH
* Agrium Inc. : Activist shareholder Jana Partners
LLC said it is taking its case for splitting up the fertilizer
company to its Canadian investors, just ahead of an Agrium move
to solidify its support among sell-side analysts.
* Alamos Gold Inc. : The company said it could not
sweeten its C$4.65-per-share offer for Aurizon Mines Ltd
as its rival has not provided any new information to
warrant a change in the bid.
Following is a summary of research actions on Canadian
companies reported by Reuters.
* Oil and gas: Barclays cuts price target of Baytex Energy
Corp to C$49 from C$54; of Crescent Point Energy Corp
to C$45 from C$50 and of Penn West Petroleum
to C$10 from C$12; says weak commodity prices have impacted
sector-wide cash flows and spending rates thus affecting
* Celtic Exploration Ltd. : National Bank Financial
raises target to C$27.50 from C$26.50, says the company
isdelisting its shares and spinning off into a new company,
Kelt, following approval
* Fortress Paper Ltd. : RBC cuts to sector perform
from outperform to reflect weaker pulp pricing outlook, slower
ramp-up of pulp production at Thurso and higher cost assumptions
* Methanex Corp. : CIBC raises target price to C$32
from C$31 after the company said it has secured a 10-year
natural gas contract in Geismar which will reduce its exposure
to natural gas price fluctuations and lower its risk profile
ON THE CALENDAR
* No major Canadian economic data scheduled for release
* Major U.S. events and data includes initial claims,
continuing claims, Markit Flash mfg PMI