LONDON Feb 17 Britain's FTSE 100 index
is seen inching higher on Monday, with futures gaining
0.1 percent by 0727 GMT ahead of the cash market open.
* The UK blue chip index closed up 4.20 points, up 0.1
percent, at 6,663.62 points on Friday.
The FTSE 100, up nearly 4 percent from its February lows,
has now recouped more than half of what it lost during the
recent emerging markets sell-off. It climbed above its 50-day
moving average last week, a technical signal which suggested
underlying support from buyers.
* The Bank of England will only start to increase interest
rates when the economy is operating at closer to full capacity,
central bank governor Mark Carney said in an interview broadcast
Carney also said that while he was concerned about Britain's
history of booms and busts in house prices, a government scheme
to aid home-buyers, Help to Buy, was not currently a major
factor in boosting prices.
* HAMMERSON : The property company said its
full-year net asset value rose 5.7 percent, and that it has
lifted its dividend by 8 percent.
* ROYAL MAIL : Royal Mail and the Communication
Workers Union have started talks on a company charter to
enshrine their post-privatisation agreement over working
conditions for more than 100,000 workers so that the terms can
only be overturned by a vote of the company's shareholders, the
* ESSAR ENERGY : The company said its largest
shareholder, Essar Global Fund Ltd, has made a possible offer of
70 pence per share for the 22 percent stake it does not own in
the London-listed oil and gas producer.
* ROLLS ROYCE : The company faces a showdown with
investors over how it accounts for lucrative contracts to
service aircraft engines, the Times said. The company will now
hold a briefing on the issue at July's Farnborough airshow.
Also, an investigation by Britain's anti-fraud watchdog into
Rolls-Royce's dealings in Asia extends to contracts signed less
than three years ago, the Telegraph newspaper said.
* RSA : British insurer RSA is looking for
prospective buyers for the sale of one of its Canadian
businesses, which could help the company raise as much as 200
million pounds ($334.6 million), Sky News reported on Sunday.
RSA had previously said it was considering all options to
raise capital that could include the sale of business units.
The Financial Times on Saturday said that RSA was sounding
out institutional investors to raise as much as 350 million
pounds ($585.59 million) in an emergency share placing that
would allow it to avoid a rights issue.
* BARCLAYS : Sky News has learnt that Barclays has
engaged headhunters to begin a search process to replace Sir
David Walker as chairman in the coming months and has already
commenced board discussions about the plan.
* LLOYDS BANKING GROUP : Lloyds is in talks with
Britain's Prudential Regulation Authority over "ringfencing"
rules in an attempt to save its investment banking functions,
the Financial Times reported.
* British retailers Poundland and Pets at Home are expected
to announce plans this week to list on the London Stock
Exchange, The Sunday Telegraph reported.
* WHITBREAD : The company announced a partnership
with Action Hotels to develop the Premier Inn brand across the
* CAPITA : The outsourcing group has signed a
framework contract for the Scottish wide area network.
TODAY'S UK PAPERS
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