TSX futures muted as gold prices slip; U.S. jobs data in focus

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(Reuters) - Futures tracking Canada's resources-heavy main stock index were subdued on Thursday as gold prices slipped, while investors awaited U.S. labor data to gauge the Federal Reserve's next policy move amid growing fears of a recession.

Futures on the S&P/TSX index were flat, while those tracking Wall Street's main indexes steadied after a recent string of losses. [.N]

While oil prices rebounded on hopes that easing anti-COVID measures in China will revive demand, gold prices slipped against a stronger dollar. [O/R] [MET/L]

Commodity prices have a major impact on Toronto stocks, as materials and energy companies combined have a weightage of about 31% on the main index.

After recent signs of U.S. economic strength fueled worries that interest rates may stay higher for longer, investors will keep an eye out for more data, including the weekly jobless claims report later in the day in the run-up to the U.S. central bank's interest rate decision next week.

The Bank of Canada hiked its overnight lending rate by 50-basis points on Wednesday, touching a 15-year high but the central bank signaled its unprecedented tightening campaign was near an end.

The benchmark Canadian index closed lower for a fourth straight session on Wednesday, though it has recovered from its October lows on hopes that the U.S. Fed and other major central banks may temper their aggressive rate-hike stance.

Meanwhile, Canada proposed beefing up its foreign investment rules to give the government greater power to scrutinize and potentially block overseas deals that bring national security risks.

(Reporting by Shashwat Chauhan in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D'Silva)


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