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Futures Fairly Flat to Start Last Week of February

Futures for Canada's main stock index inched lower on Monday, tracking a decline in commodity prices, while investors awaited economic data expected this week to adjust their rate cut expectations from U.S. and Canadian central banks.

The TSX Composite muscled higher 95.07 points to finish a short week at 21,413.15. On a four-day week, the index gained 157 points, or 0.74%.

March futures were down 0.1% Monday.

The Canadian dollar let go of 0.2 cents to 73.99 cents U.S.

Among corporate earnings, all eyes will be on the big banks, including Bank of Montreal, Toronto-Dominion Bank and Royal Bank of Canada that will report their quarterly numbers this week.

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In other corporate news, air cargo service provider Cargojet reported its fourth-quarter revenue below analysts' estimates.

Air Canada said on Friday that it will cap fares and add more than 6,000 seats in some markets operated by Lynx Air in light of the imminent suspension of operations by the troubled Canadian budget airline.

ON BAYSTREET

The TSX Venture Exchange lost 5.11 points to 548.14 Friday, sending the index down 8.6 points on the week, or 1.55%.

ON WALLSTREET

U.S. equity futures were little changed Monday after key stock benchmarks reached record highs and investors awaited inflation data slated for release later this week.

Futures for the Dow Jones Industrials lost 38 points, or 0.1%, to 39,151.

Futures for the S&P 500 lost 2.5 points, or 0.1%, at 5,099.

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Futures for the NASDAQ eased four points to 17,987.

Amazon is joining the 30-stock Dow on Monday, replacing Walgreens Boots Alliance. The Dow’s holdings are weighted according to stock price, not market cap. The addition of the e-commerce giant will increase the index’s exposure to consumer retail.

Stocks are coming into the final week of February on a high note after the major indexes achieved key milestones and registered winning weeks with help from Nvidia’s blockbuster earnings. The blue-chip Dow closed at an all-time high, the S&P at one point in the session broke above 5,100 for the first time, and the tech-heavy NASDAQ Composite touched a 52-week high in Friday’s session.

Investors are now watching whether the AI momentum can last as economic and inflation risks linger. With that in mind, they’re also looking ahead to the monthly personal consumption expenditures price index, the Fed’s favored inflation gauge due out Thursday.

There’s a raft of economic releases on deck, including January durable orders data on Tuesday and January wholesale inventories on Wednesday.

Elsewhere, corporate earnings are winding down but several high-interest names are reporting in the coming week, which could give investors greater insight into the state of tech and the consumer.

In Japan, the Nikkei climbed 0.4% Monday to a new all-time high, while in Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index backed off 0.5%.

Oil prices stepped back 19 cents to $76.30 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices dulled $8.80 to $2,040.60 U.S. an ounce.