April 12, 2018 / 5:42 AM / 10 days ago

UK Stocks-Factors to watch on April 12

    April 12 (Reuters) - Britain's FTSE 100 index is seen opening 18
points lower at 7,239 on Thursday, according to financial bookmakers. 
    
    * SHIRE: Takeda Pharmaceutical Co Ltd has sounded out creditors for
loans, sources with direct knowledge of the matter said, as it moves closer to
making a bid for London-listed rare disease specialist Shire that could
top $40 billion.
    * FIRSTGROUP: British bus and rail operator FirstGroup has rejected
a takeover approach from U.S. private equity firm Apollo Global Management
, becoming the latest company to be swept up by a wave of bids in the UK.
 
    * RIO TINTO: Rio Tinto, defended its executive salary
policy on Wednesday after proxy adviser Glass Lewis urged shareholders to vote
against it and criticised the firm for paying out bonuses in 2017, a year when
two employees died at work.
    * GLENCORE: Swiss-based trading and mining giant Glencore will
declare force majeure on some aluminium supply, days after the United States
sanctioned major supplier Rusal and its boss, metals magnate Oleg
Deripaska, a source familiar with the matter said. 
    * PLAYTECH: British gambling technology company Playtech said it
agreed to buy a 70.6 percent stake in Italian betting and gaming firm Snaitech
 for 846 million euros($1.05 billion), in a move to source most of its
revenue from regulated markets.
    * BRITAIN-SYRIA: British Prime Minister Theresa May has called government
ministers to a Thursday cabinet meeting on Syria, which media reports said was
likely to lead to London joining in a military response to a suspected chemical
attack in Syria.
    * BRITAIN HOUSE PRICES: A closely-watched gauge of British house prices held
at a five-year low last month, reflecting soft consumer demand at a time when
the Bank of England looks set to raise interest rates, property valuers said on
Thursday. 
    * BRITISH ECONOMY: Britain's economy has been treading water since the start
of the year and inflation pressures are easing, limiting the case for the Bank
of England to raise interest rates next month, the British Chambers of Commerce
said on Thursday. 
    * OIL: Oil markets remained tense on Thursday on concerns over a military
escalation in Syria, although prices remained some way off Wednesday's highest
since late 2014 as bulging American supplies weighed.
    * GOLD: After suffering three defeats in a week, including a Champions
League exit, leaders Manchester City get back to business in the Premier League
on Saturday but face another tough test at fourth-placed Tottenham Hotspur.
 
    * EX-DIVS: ITV Plc, Paddy Power Betfair, Reckitt Benckiser
Group, Rentokil Initial and Smurfit Kappa Group will
trade without entitlement to their latest dividend pay-out on Thursday, trimming
4.27 points off the FTSE 100 according to Reuters calculations.
    * The UK blue chip index closed down 0.13 percent at 7,257.14 on Wednesday,
as renewed caution among investors dented Britain's top share index as Western
forces discussed possible military action against Syria, although strong results
from Tesco pushed its shares higher. 
    * For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on: cpurl://apps.cp./cms/?pageId=livemarkets
    
    * UK CORPORATE DIARY:
   
 Comptoir Group PLC                Full Year 
 Hays PLC                          Q3
 Greene King PLC                   Pre-Close Trading Statement
 Dunelm Group PLC                  Q3
 Man Group PLC                     Q1
 WH Smith PLC                      Half Year 
 Saga PLC                          Preliminary 2018 Earnings Release
 
        
    TODAY'S UK PAPERS
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 (Reporting by Noor Zainab Hussain in Bengaluru)
  
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