LONDON Feb 8 Britain's FTSE 100 is seen opening up on Friday, with futures trading 0.3 percent higher by 0722 GMT and financial bookmakers forecasting that the blue chip index will add around 29 points, or 0.5 percent. For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on
* China's exports and imports surged more than expected in January, data showed on Friday, pointing both to a pick up in the Asian powerhouse and in the global economy as a whole.
* Domestic British data also offered some comfort, with the number of people placed in permanent jobs rising for the fourth consecutive month in January.
* Asian shares gained overnight. Copper and oil - key drivers for Britain's heavyweight mining and energy shares - also gained.
* There were some signs of progress in Europe with EU leaders agreeing the framework for a new long-term budget on Friday after 15 hours of intense negotiations.
* Faced with a relatively light data calendar, investors will likely focus on the latest LTRO repayment data, with banks expected to pledge to repay 3 billion euros of ECB's first-round 3-year crisis-time loans.
* The FTSE 100 closed down 66.92 points, or 1.1 percent on Thursday as traders took profits on an index that has outperformed Europe this year.
* TESCO - Britain's horse meat scandal has prompted the Food Standards Agency has demanded that food retailers and suppliers test all beef products such as burgers, meatballs and lasagne and present their findings to the agency by February 15. Britain's food industry has been rocked by an alarming rise in incidents of retailers recalling their beef products after tests revealed the presence of horse meat in them.
* SEVERN TRENT - The utilities firm sells Severn Trent analytical services to ALS limited. The business accounted for about 1.5 per cent of Severn Trent Group's overall revenue.
* CABLE & WIRELESS COMMUNICATIONS - CWC says group trading performance remains in line with outlook, with EBITDA performance for 2012/13 similar to 2011/12.
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 Toni Vorobyova; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta)
Shell, Exxon to appeal latest Groningen gas production cap
AMSTERDAM, June 28 A joint venture between Royal Dutch Shell and Exxon Mobil said on Wednesday it will file an appeal against a Dutch government plan to lower a production cap at the Groningen natural gas field by a further 10 percent.