Futures Dip as Gold Prices Drop

Suncor, Bombardier in Focus

Equities in Canada’s largest centre were lower on Thursday as gold prices slipped after the Federal Reserve struck a hawkish tone on inflation and said it expected "further gradual" rate increases will be warranted.

The S&P/TSX Composite Index fell 3.84 points to finish Wednesday at 15,951.67

The Canadian dollar retreated 0.11 cents to 81.16 cents U.S. Thursday morning.

March futures settled 0.1% Thursday.

Suncor Energy said on Wednesday that it expected to cut some 400 heavy-equipment operator positions over the next six years as it rolls out a fleet of self-driving trucks at its Canadian oil sand mining operations.

A recent trade decision allowing Bombardier to sell its newest jets in the United States without hefty duties will boost airline confidence in the program, but the Canadian planemaker still faces challenges to win over lessors.

CIBC cut the rating on Ivanhoe Mines to neutral from outperform

CIBC raised the rating on Toronto-Dominion Bank to outperform from neutral

Canaccord Genuity cut the rating on Liquor Stores N. A. to hold from buy

On the economic slate, Markit Canada Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index is due at 9:30 ET Thursday.

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange regained 6.02 points Wednesday to 864.35.

ON WALLSTREET

U.S. stock index futures fell Thursday, with stocks set to give back some of their strong gains from the previous month.

Futures for the Dow Jones Industrials slid 38 points, or 0.2%, to 26,098,

S&P 500 futures inched up one point to 2,826.75, while futures on the NASDAQ Composite subsided 14.5 points, or 0.2%, at 6,948

On Wednesday, the Dow ended January 5.6% up, while the S&P 500 rose 5.8% in the same period. Both indexes posted their best monthly performances since March 2016.

In earnings, Amazon, Alphabet, Apple and Visa are due to release figures after the bell.

Wednesday's session was affected by comments from the U.S. Federal Reserve that sent interest rates higher.

The Fed decided to leave interest rates unchanged, but said it expects inflation to move "up this year and to stabilize" around its 2% target.

As a result, bond yields rose during the session as traders grow confident that the Fed might step up the pace of policy normalization.

Investors will be looking at fresh data and earnings Thursday. In terms of data, Institute for Supply Management manufacturing new orders and construction spending numbers are both due at 10 a.m. ET, followed by total vehicles sales for January at 3 p.m. ET.

Overseas, Japan’s Nikkei 225 index gained 1.7%, and in Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index fell 0.8%.

Oil prices increased 77 cents to $65.50 U.S. per barrel.

Gold prices decreased 50 cents to $1,342.60 U.S. an ounce.