January 30, 2020 / 7:59 AM / 19 days ago

UPDATE 1-UK Stocks-Factors to watch on Jan. 30

(Adds news items and futures)

Jan 30 (Reuters) - Britain’s FTSE 100 index is seen opening down 41 points on Thursday, with futures down 1% ahead of cash market open.

* FOXTONS: Real estate agent Foxtons Group Plc posted lower annual revenue on Thursday, but said Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s election win could improve sales in the sector for 2020.

* MITIE: British outsourcing firm Mitie Group Plc said on Thursday it expects annual organic revenue growth to be flat, as public sector activity slowed and it reduced spending on its largest division.

* AVAST: Avast Plc said on Thursday that will it not be providing data to its Jumpshot data analytics business anymore, a day after the cybersecurity company said it was reviewing options for the division following reports of data privacy concerns.

* ST. JAMES’S PLACE: British wealth manager St. James’s Place on Thursday posted a 3.7% increase in fourth-quarter assets under management on the back of net inflows of client cash and market gains.

* UNILEVER: Consumer goods giant Unilever posted a slightly better than expected rise in quarterly sales on Thursday, helped by higher prices in Brazil and strong performance in its home care business.

* DIAGEO: Diageo Plc, the world’s largest spirits company, reported a marginal rise in first-half operating profit on Thursday and expects annual organic net sales growth to be at the lower end of its previous outlook.

* BT: BT said Britain’s decision to limit Huawei’s role in building 5G and fibre networks would increase the cost of its gigabit-communications plan by about 500 million pounds ($657 million) over five years.

* ROYAL DUTCH SHELL: Royal Dutch Shell said on Wednesday director Euleen Goh would take over as its deputy chair from May 20.

* FERROVIAL: Spanish engineering and construction firm Ferrovial, owner of London’s Heathrow Airport, plans to sell mature assets and buy into water infrastructures and Latin America’s electricity grids, company executives said on Wednesday.

* WOODFORD: Investors in the collapsed equity income formerly run by British money manager Neil Woodford will get 75% of the value of the fund in their first pay-out, its administrator said on Wednesday.

* OIL: Oil prices fell as the death toll from the new virus in China climbed to 170 and more airlines cancelled flights to the country’s major cities, while rising U.S. crude inventories added to the negative tone.

* GOLD: Gold prices edged higher after the U.S. Federal Reserve Chair’s remarks that the new coronavirus outbreak could impact China’s economy in the short term boosted the safe-haven metal’s appeal.

* The UK blue-chip index closed up 0.04% on Wednesday after a steep sell-off earlier this week on rising fears over the impact from the coronavirus, though the bounce lost some punch as oil majors dipped alongside crude prices on U.S. stockpile data.

* For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on:

TODAY’S UK PAPERS

> Financial Times

> Other business headlines (Reporting by Aniruddha Ghosh in Bengaluru)

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