UK Stocks-Factors to watch on Wednesday, Jan 30

LONDON Wed Jan 30, 2013 2:00am EST

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LONDON Jan 30 (Reuters) - Britain's FTSE 100 index is seen opening flat to 3 points higher, according to financial bookmakers. For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on

* The UK blue chip index closed 44.78 points higher, or 0.7 percent, on Thursday at 6,339.19, posting its highest close since May 2008 after miners rallied strongly, with sentiment supported by improving in U.S. housing data.

* Focus will be on the U.S. Federal Reserve's statement after a two-day policy meeting, with investors looking for hints as to whether stimulus measures are still needed to help support the world's biggest economy.

* China's top think tank lifted on Tuesday its economic growth forecast for 2013 to 8.4 percent from 8.2 percent, with faster expansion seen in the first half of the year.

* BP - A U.S. judge accepted an agreement by the oil company to plead guilty for its role in the Deepwater Horizon disaster and pay a record $4 billion in criminal penalties for the worst offshore oil spill in U.S. history, drawing a line under federal suits against the firm but not civil or state cases.

* AGGREKO - The emergency energy provider fell in Thursday's trade due to fears about a fresh profit warning, according to the Daily Mail's market report. The rumours come less than two months since their last one wiped over 20 percent off their share price.

* UK CORPORATE DIARY:

IMPERIAL TOBACCO to issue a trading update; RENISHAW issues first half trading results; UNITED UTILITIES issues a trading update and SAFESTORE HOLDINGS issues preliminary results.

TODAY'S UK PAPERS

> Financial Times

> Other business headlines Multimedia versions of Reuters Top News are now available for: * 3000 Xtra : visit* BridgeStation: view story .134(Reporting by Alistair Smout)

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