March 2, 2018 / 7:37 AM / 3 months ago

UPDATE 2-UK Stocks-Factors to watch on March 2

(Adds new company news items, updates items and futures)

March 2 (Reuters) - Britain’s FTSE 100 index is seen opening 60 points lower at 7,115 on Friday, according to financial bookmakers, with futures down 0.45 percent ahead of the cash market open.

* LONDON STOCK EXCHANGE GROUP: London Stock Exchange Group reported a 47 percent rise in full-year operating profit on Friday as its clearing house LCH posted record volumes across multiple clearing services and company flotations hit a three-year high.

* GKN/MELROSE: British engineering company GKN, which has set out plans to break itself up as it battles a 7 billion-pound hostile bid from Melrose Industries, said it was in talks with Dana Inc regarding the sale of its auto-parts Driveline unit as part of a deal which would be effected mainly in equity.

* ASOS: British online fashion retailer ASOS said on Friday Chief Financial Officer Helen Ashton will step down from her role next month.

* LAND SECURITIES: Alison Carnwath, one of a handful of women at the helm of a FTSE 100 company board, is retiring after nine years as chairwoman at Land Securities, Britain’s largest listed commercial property developer.

* SPIRE HEALTHCARE: Spire Healthcare Group Plc, Britain’s second-largest healthcare firm, said 2017 core earnings fell 7.4 percent, hurt by weakness in its business linked to NHS online referrals.

* MONDI: Paper and packaging group Mondi, announced a special payout of 100 euro cents per share after full-year underlying profit rose 4 percent, benefiting from solid demand and higher average selling prices in most of its businesses.

* RIO TINTO: Australia’s corporate watchdog said on Friday it has launched court action against global miner Rio Tinto and two former executives for misleading investors about the coal reserves it reported in a $4 billion acquisition in Mozambique.

* ANTOFAGASTA: The main union of Chile’s Los Pelambres copper mine, a unit of the local group Antofagasta, will vote next week on a new contract its members have not yet received and which could lead to a strike if they refuse, a union leader told Reuters on Thursday.

* HELIOS TOWERS: African mobile networks operator Helios Towers plans to list on the main market of the London Stock Exchange in early April and expects the company to be valued at around 2 billion pounds ($2.75 billion).

* BREXIT: British Prime Minister Theresa May will set out her vision on Friday for a Brexit deal deeper and wider than any “free trade agreement anywhere in the world”, telling the European Union it is in their “shared interest”.

* The UK blue chip index closed 0.8 percent lower at 7,175.6 points on Thursday, after advertising giant WPP reported its worst results since the financial crisis and a gauge of British factory activity fell to its weakest in eight months.

* For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on: cpurl://apps.cp./cms/?pageId=livemarkets

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 * For Top News : topnews.reuters.com (Reporting by Esha Vaish in Bengaluru)

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