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April 4 (Reuters) - Britain’s FTSE 100 index is seen opening 8 points lower at 7,023 on Wednesday, according to financial bookmakers with futures down 0.3 percent ahead of the cash market open.
* SMITH & NEPHEW: Artificial hip and knee maker Smith & Nephew said on Wednesday it had appointed Namal Nawana to replace Olivier Bohuon as chief executive of the British company next month.
* TOPPS TILES: British flooring retailer Topps Tiles said comparable sales in the second quarter were down 2.2 percent, dragged by a weaker underlying market and the impact of adverse weather in the two months through March.
* WPP: British advertising group WPP Plc said on Tuesday it was conducting an investigation in response to an allegation of personal misconduct against its chief executive, Martin Sorrell, who denied wrongdoing.
* BRITAIN RETAIL: British shop prices dropped in March at the fastest pace in more than a year, adding to signs that inflation pressure caused by the pound’s post-Brexit drop is fading away, an industry survey showed on Wednesday.
* PSA/UK: French carmaker PSA Group plans to begin production of Peugeot and Citroen delivery vans at its newly acquired Opel/Vauxhall division’s Luton plant in England, a company source said on Tuesday.
* OIL: Oil prices slipped on Wednesday on expectations for a build-up in U.S. crude inventories, but Russian government comments on prospects for stepping up cooperation with OPEC to coordinate output cuts braked steeper declines. Brent crude futures dipped to $67.96 per barrel, down 16 cents, or 0.23 percent, after it rose 0.7 percent on Tuesday.
* GOLD: Gold prices gained on Wednesday, as investors stayed away from risk assets after the United States slapped tariffs on $50 billion worth imports from China, raising the stakes in a growing trade showdown with Beijing.
* The UK blue chip index ended down 0.37 percent at 7,030.46 points on Tuesday, in line with other European bourses at the start of the second quarter.
* For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on: cpurl://apps.cp./cms/?pageId=livemarkets
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