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Toronto set to open flat
[December 04, 2012]

Toronto set to open flat

(Baystreet Stock Market Update (Canada) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) BMO out with earnings The Toronto stock market headed for a flat open Tuesday while commodities moved lower and traders exercised caution while waiting for the next development in the U.S. fiscal standoff between Republicans and Democrats.

The S&P/TSX composite index ended Monday down 69.62 points to 12,169.74 The Canadian dollar gained 0.06 cents to 100.55 cents U.S. Tuesday morning, ahead of the Bank of Canada's announcement on interest rates, scheduled for 9 a.m. EST. The bank is widely expected to leave its key interest rate unchanged at one per cent for an 18th meeting.

Traders also took in quarter and annual earnings from Bank of Montreal which beat estimates.

BMO had a fourth-quarter profit of $1.08 billion, up 41 per cent from a year ago.

The bank's adjusted earnings amounted to $1.65 per share, beating estimates by 22 cents a share. The quarter brought Bank of Montreal's total net income for the 2012 financial year to $4.19 billion, up 35% from last year.

ON BAYSTREET The TSX Venture Exchange subtracted 12.90 points to 1,169.74 ON WALLSTREET U.S. stock futures were barely higher as uncertainty over the negotiations is setting Wall Street up for another choppy day.

The Dow Jones Industrials futures gained 18 points, or 0.1%, to 12,968, while S&P 500 futures subtracted 0.90 points to 1,406.20, and futures for the tech-rich Nasdaq picked up three points, or 0.1%, to 2,673 In corporate news, shares of Big Lots jumped more 10% in premarket trading, after the discount retailer posted a narrower loss than analysts had been expecting.

Home builder Toll Brothers reported fourth quarter revenue that topped forecasts, sending shares more than 4% higher.

MetroPCS shares slipped nearly 6% following reports that Sprint is not likely to make a counter offer to acquire the wireless carrier.

Earnings results from music streaming service Pandora are higher ahead of the opening bell.

President Obama outlined a proposal last week that called for $1.6 trillion U.S. in new taxes, among other things. Republicans issued a counter-proposal Monday that included tax reforms, changes to Medicare and other spending cuts worth $2.2 trillion U.S. over the next decade.

That plan was quickly dismissed by the White House, and the apparent deadlock is likely to set the early tone for markets.

Earlier in Asia, Japan's Nikkei 225 index fell 0.3%, Hong Kong's Hang Seng gained 0.2% and South Korea's Kospi fell 0.3%. In mainland China, the Shanghai Composite Index rose 0.8% while the smaller Shenzhen Composite Index added 1.3% European bourses were positive as talks between the 27 European Union finance ministers got under way in Brussels.

Oil prices sank $1.12 to $87.97 U.S. a barrel Gold prices dove $18.10 to $1,703.10 U.S. an ounce.

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