TSX futures flat as BoC's rate hike shock offsets gains in commodities

(Reuters) – Futures for Canada’s main resource-heavy stock index were muted on Thursday as the Bank of Canada’s surprise interest rate hike continued to dent investor sentiment, while gains in oil and precious metal prices provided some relief.

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The facade of the original Toronto Stock Exchange building is seen in Toronto

June futures on the S&P/TSX index were little changed after the benchmark index closed 0.4% lower in the previous session.

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The Bank of Canada on Wednesday hiked its key rate to a 22-year high of 4.75%, and markets and analysts immediately forecast another increase next month to ratchet down an overheating economy and stubbornly high inflation.

“The 25 bps hike to 4.75% by the BoC was wrapped in a hawkish statement … the choice of words describes an inflation backdrop that could apply to other developed economies,” Societe Generale analysts said in a note.

Citigroup expects the central bank to deliver a 25-basis-point hike in July and sees a high chance of rates topping 5%.

As the move follows a rate hike by Australia’s central bank earlier this week and a warning of further tightening, fears around U.S. rates likely staying higher for longer remerged.

Investors now are considering the possibility of the Federal Reserve remaining hawkish in its policy meeting next week.

Pressured by government bond yields hovering near recent highs, Wall Street’s index futures were largely flat. [.N]

On the commodities front, gold prices firmed on a slight pullback in the U.S. dollar, while crude oil prices shrugged off their initial losses. [GOL/][O/R]


Gold futures: $1,953.1; +0.2% [GOL/]

US crude: $72.99; +0.63% [O/R]

Brent crude: $77.38; +0.56% [O/R]


Weekly jobless claims

($1 = 1.3355 Canadian dollars)

(Reporting by Ankika Biswas and Shashwat Chauhan in Bengaluru; Editing by Shweta Agarwal)