October 30, 2019 / 7:45 AM / 22 days ago

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

(Adds futures, news items)

Oct 30 - Britain’s FTSE 100 index is seen opening 7 points lower at 7,299 on Wednesday, according to financial bookmakers, with futures down 0.2% ahead of the cash market open.

* NEXT: British clothing retailer Next kept its profit guidance for the full 2019-20 year, as it reported third quarter sales growth slightly ahead of guidance given in September.

* SAINSBURY’S: British supermarket chain Sainsbury’s said it was looking for two new board members after non-executive directors Matt Brittin and Jean Tomlin announced plans to leave next year.

* DE LA RUE: Passport maker De La Rue warned its annual profit would be significantly lower than market expectations, as its new top boss, a turnaround specialist, leads a review of the business.

* BREXIT: Britain will hold its first December election in almost a century after Prime Minister Boris Johnson finally won parliamentary approval for a gamble on a snap ballot that he hopes will break the deadlock over Brexit.

* STANDARD CHARTERED: Standard Chartered reported that third-quarter profit rose a better-than-expected 16%, as a surge in business from corporate clients helped the bank weather unrest in its core market of Hong Kong and global trade tensions.

* BP: BP Plc wants to be part of an effort to build up natural gas infrastructure in Brazil, an executive said on Tuesday, and believes a power plant it is building in Rio de Janeiro could eventually be supplied by gas from offshore oilfields here.

* ROYAL MAIL: UK’s Royal Mail Plc has written to the Communications Workers Union (CWU) saying it will enter into talks “without preconditions” if the union agrees to remove the threat of strike action over the Christmas, the company said on Tuesday.

* INMARSAT: The British government cleared the acquisition of satellite communications company Inmarsat by a private equity consortium after it accepted undertakings given by the acquirer relating to national security.

* BHP: BHP said its Escondida copper mine, the world’s largest, was operating at a “reduced rate” after union workers walked off the job for part of the day on Tuesday in solidarity with the anti-government protest movement across Chile.

* GOLD: Gold prices firmed as a possible delay in U.S.-China trade deal stalled a rally in equities, while investors shifted focus to a U.S. central bank meeting later in the day where it is expected to cut interest rates.

* OIL: Oil prices fell as a possible delay in resolving the U.S.-China trade war overshadowed a drop in U.S. crude inventories.

* The UK blue chip index dipped 0.3%, its biggest daily drop in ten days, as the prospect of a December general election put investors in Britain in a cautious mood, while heavyweight BP slid on lower profits.

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

TODAY’S UK PAPERS

> Financial Times

> Other business headlines (Reporting by Pushkala Aripaka and Shanima A in Bengaluru)

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