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Bay Street In Doldrums As Bank Earnings Wind Down -- Canadian Commentary

Canadian stocks are poised for another lackluster open Tuesday morning amid lower oil prices and disappointing bank earnings.

Bank of Montreal (BMO.TO) reported a rough fourth quarter as earnings fell 6%. However, the bank raised its divided.

Hurt by insurance claims related to hurricanes, the bank reported its fourth-quarter net income fell to $1.23 billion or $1.81 per share, down from $1.35 billion or $2.02 per share a year ago.

Laurentian Bank (LB.TO) also raised its dividend, but reported net income was up sharply in the fourth quarter.

Scotia Bank (BNS.TO) has won regulatory approval for its recent acquisition of a Chilean bank.

Trendy apparel maker Roots (ROOT.TO) sales were up 13 percent in its latest quarter compared with a year ago. Shares remain below their recent IPO price.

In economic news, Canada's merchandise trade deficit with the world totalled $1.5 billion in October, narrowing from a $3.4 billion deficit in September. Exports were up 2.7% while imports decreased 1.6%.

WTI light sweet oil was down 20 cents at $57.26 a barrel.

by RTT Staff Writer

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