Oct 17 (Reuters) - Canada's main stock index pointed to alower open on Thursday as investors looked beyond Washington'slast-minute debt default deal and focused on the effects of the16-day government shutdown and prospects of a re-run next year.
* The U.S. Congress on Wednesday approved an 11th-hour dealto end a partial government shutdown and pull the world'sbiggest economy back from the brink of a historic debt defaultthat could have threatened financial calamity.
* UnitedHealth Group Inc said that its third-quarter profitrose about 1 percent, helped by the enrollment of an additional275,000 people in its health insurance plans.
* Goldman Sachs Group Inc's quarterly profit fell 2 percentas weak bond-trading volumes hit revenue in the Wall Streetbank's biggest business.
* Verizon Communications Inc posted quarterly revenueslightly ahead of Wall Street expectations as it added customersto its wireless business.
* Medical products maker Baxter International Inc reported a7 percent fall in third-quarter earnings, hurt by chargesrelated to its $4 billion acquisition of Swedish dialysisproducts company Gambro AB.
* Canada stock futures traded down 0.09 percent
* U.S. stock futures , , were mixedaround -0.35 percent to 0.05 percent
* European shares, were down
COMMODITY PRICE MOVES
* Thomson Reuters-Jefferies CRB Index : 288.1644;was unchanged
* Gold futures : $1,307.2; rose 1.97 percent
* US crude : $101.7; fell 0.58 percent
* Brent crude : $110.05; fell 0.49 percent
* LME 3-month copper : $7,204.75; fell 0.76 percent
Following is a summary of research actions on Canadiancompanies reported by Reuters.
* Air Canada and Westjet Airlines : BMOraises price target to C$6 from C$5; rating outperform and pricetarget to C$26 from C$23; market perform respectively as costtrends appear favorable and valuations remained inexpensive.
* Enerplus Corp : RBC raises to outperform; pricetarget to C$22 from C$20 on the company's operating momentum,relative valuation and improved capital discipline.
* SNC-Lavalin : CIBC cuts price target to C$48 fromC$50; rating sector outperformer after the company reduced netincome guidance.
ON THE CALENDAR
* Major Canadian economic data includes Canadian and foreignsecurities
* Major U.S. events and data includes initial and continuingclaims
- Investment & Company Information
- government shutdown
- UnitedHealth Group Inc
- Verizon Communications Inc
- Goldman Sachs Group Inc