UK Stocks-Factors to watch on Thursday, Jan 9
LONDON Jan 9 (Reuters) - Britain's FTSE 100 index is seen opening flat to 4 points higher, or as much as 0.1 percent firmer, on Thursday, according to financial bookmakers.
* The UK blue chip index closed down 33.67 points, or 0.5 percent, at 6,716.16 on Wednesday, with retailer J Sainsbury falling after issuing a cautious outlook and tobacco lower on concerns over regulation in China.
* RETAILERS - Eyes will be on trading updates from Marks and Spencer and Tesco after Sainbury's update on Wednesday, which revealed its "best Christmas ever" but warned on consumer spending going forward.
* The Bank of England and European Central Bank meet on Thursday, with both central banks are likely to keep interest rates on hold. The ECB, however, is expected to remind markets its policy could ease further if inflation stays too low or money market conditions tighten.
* Minutes of the U.S. Federal Reserve's Dec. 17-18 policy meeting, released after European market close on Wednesday, showed many members of the policy-setting committee wanted to proceed with caution in trimming the asset purchases.
* UK CORPORATE DIARY:
GREGGS PLC TRADING
HAYS PLC TRADING
LAIRD PLC TRADING
MCBRIDE PLC TRADING
MARKS AND SPENCER GROUP PLC Q3 TRADE
PACE PLC YRTRADE
RATHBONE BROTHERS PLC TRADING
RESTAURANT GROUP PLC TRADING
SIG PLC TRADING
TED BAKER PLC TRADING
TESCO PLC TRADING
TODAY'S UK PAPERS
> Financial Times
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