TSX tug-of-war possible as commodities down, world markets up

TORONTO -- American stock market futures and European indexes were pointing upwards Tuesday but prices for major commodities were down, suggesting the Toronto Stock Exchange could be facing a tug-of-war.

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The Dow Jones index futures were up 169 points or about one per cent before regular North American trading began. The S&P 500 futures were similarly ahead 20.25 points and Nasdaq futures gained 50 points to 4,323.0.

Meanwhile, the FTSE 100 in London, CAC 40 in Paris and Dax index in Germany were each up more than two per cent after Asian markets closed and before the TSX opened Tuesday.

On Monday, the S&P/TSX Composite index slipped 126.20 points on Monday, closing at 12,319.25. It has lost more than seven per cent of its value since Christmas Eve, mainly because of depressed resource stocks.

The Canadian dollar was at 70.46 cents U.S. about an hour before the North American stock market opened, up 0.17 of a cent from Monday's close. It fell by 0.37 of a U.S. cent on Monday.

On the commodity markets, the February crude contract was at US$31.30 a barrel, down 11 cents and the February gold contract was down $9.80 to US$1,086.40 an ounce.

The loonie has been edging towards 70 cents US, a level that it hasn't seen since April 2003 as prices for major commodities fall, particularly oil.


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