UPDATE 1-UK Stocks-Factors to watch on Wed Sept 18
LONDON, Sept 18 (Reuters) - Britain's FTSE 100 index is seen opening up 18 points, or 0.3 percent higher on Wednesday, according to financial bookmakers, with futures flat ahead of the cash market open. For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on
* The UK blue chip index closed 52.69 points lower on Tuesday at 6,570.17, its worst day in September, taking it down from 1-1/2 month highs.
* Ex-divs will trim 0.36 points off the FTSE 100 on Wednesday, as Antofagasta, Melrose and Petrofac all trade without entitlement to their latest dividend payout.
* The U.S. Federal Reserve is expected to begin its long retreat from ultra-easy monetary policy after the UK market close by announcing a small reduction in its bond buying, while stressing that interest rates will remain near zero for a long time to come.
* China's new home prices rose at the fastest rate in at least 2-1/2 years in August, with some large cities rising around double the national pace.
* RBS /INSURERS: Prudential and Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS) were named in court on Tuesday, alongside fund majors Standard Life and Legal & General as considering suing state-owned Royal Bank of Scotland over a share offer under disgraced former Chief Executive Fred Goodwin.
*UNITED UTILITIES - The UK water supplier was the subject of gossip linking it to a near-7 billion pound ($11.1 billion) overseas takeover bid as talk of a 1,000 pence per share approach from a Middle East Sovereign wealth fund did the rounds, according to the Daily Express market report.
* SMITHS GROUP - The technology company reports a 2 percent rise in revenue, saying it is cautious about sectors such as defence and healthcare which are subject to government funding constraints.
* REDROW - The residential development company reports a rise in pretax profit of 63 percent for the full year, and sees a significant increase in output for the current year.
* M&C SAATCHI - Advertising agency M&C Saatchi's profit for the first half rose 6 percent due to new business wins.
* HIKMA PHARMACEUTICALS - Jordan's Hikma Pharmaceuticals said on Wednesday it was entering the Ethiopian market through a joint venture with Sheikh Mohammed Hussein Al Amoudi's MIDROC Group.
* JD SPORTS FASHION - The retailer said its like for like sales grew 7.5 percent, adding it was well positioned to deliver results within the range of current expectations.
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($1 = 0.6288 British pounds)
- South Korea expands air defense zone to partially overlap China's |
- U.S. war veteran released by North Korea returns home |
- Dynasty's Congress party punished in Indian state elections
- Thai PM proposes referendum on her future as protesters prepare big push
- Pennsylvania newlyweds "just wanted to murder someone together:" police