LONDON, July 17 Britain's FTSE 100 index
is seen opening down 16 points, or 0.2 percent lower on
Thursday, according to financial bookmakers. For more on the
factors affecting European stocks, please click on
* Futures for the index were down 0.3 percent by
* The UK blue chip index advanced 74.22 points, or 1.1
percent, to 6,784.67 points on Wednesday, with miners rallying
after a strong update from Rio Tinto and encouraging
economic growth data from top metals consumer China.
* British companies increased their marketing budgets for
the seventh successive quarter from April to June as they sought
to cash in on optimism over the country's recovery from
* BSKYB, ITV : Britain's pay-TV group BSkyB
has sold a 6.4 percent stake in the country's biggest
free-to-air commercial broadcaster ITV to cable group Liberty
Global for 481 million pounds ($824 million).
* SPORTS DIRECT : Britain's biggest sporting goods
retailer posted a 20 percent rise in full-year profit and said
it had again decided not to pay a dividend while it pursues
* ANGLO AMERICAN : The miner, smarting from a 5-month
strike at its platinum operations, reported higher iron ore and
copper output for the first half of the year.
* LAND SECURITIES GROUP : The property developer
sees good progress.
* SSE : Britain's second-largest energy supplier
said it continued to expect earnings at the same level or
slightly higher than last year, despite what it called "very
competitive market conditions".
* MOTHERCARE : The struggling British mother and baby
products retailer, the subject of bid interest from U.S. group
Destination Maternity, said its UK business returned to
underlying sales growth in its first quarter.
* LLOYDS BANKING GROUP : Letters sent by Lloyds
Banking Group to debtors that appeared to come from independent
lawyers were "calculated to mislead", the chairman of
parliament's Treasury Select Committee said.
TODAY'S UK PAPERS
> Financial Times
> Other business headlines
Multimedia versions of Reuters Top News are now available for:
* 3000 Xtra : visit topnews.session.rservices.com
* BridgeStation: view story .134
For more information on Top News visit
($1 = 0.5835 British Pounds)
(Reporting by Tricia Wright; Editing by Alistair Smout)