Early signals were mostly positive Wednesday morning on Bay Street as traders looked across the border to the US for a pivotal round of gross domestic product data and the Federal Reserve's latest monetary policy statement.

Bay Street stocks closed modestly lower for a second straight session on Tuesday amid swine flu fears. The S&P/Composite Index declined 46.77 points or 0.49% to 9,348.03. Bay Street's main index recovered some of its earlier losses after hitting a six-day low earlier in the day.

In earnings news from the oil patch, Talisman Energy Inc. (TLM, TLM.TO) reported first quarter net income of C$455 million or C$0.45 per share, compared to C$466 million or C$0.45 per share in the same period last year.

Net loss from continuing operations for the quarter was C$84 million or C$0.08 per share, versus income of C$412 million or C$0.40 per share in the prior year period.

Meanwhile, Oilexco Inc. (OIL.V) said it received an extension of the court order for protection under the Companies' Creditors Arrangement Act. The new order will now expire May 29, 2009.

The order permits Oilexco to remain in possession and control of its property as it continues to restructure

Wood product maker Norbord Inc. (NBD.TO) announced first quarter net loss of US$22 million or US$0.05 per share, compared to a loss of US$31 million or US$0.21 per share last year. Net sales for the quarter fell US$156 million from US$234 million in the prior year quarter.

Ballard Power Systems Inc. (BLDP,BLD.TO) reported net loss for the first quarter of US$18.6 million, or US$0.22 per share, compared to a net income of US$81.0 million or US$0.87 per share in the same period last year.

Rogers Communications (RCI.B.TO) reported first quarter EPS of C$0.49 versus C$0.54 in the prior year.

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