LONDON, Jan 9 (Reuters) - Britain’s FTSE 100 index is seen opening around 6 points lower, or 0.1 percent, on Friday, according to financial bookmakers. For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on
* The UK blue chip index closed up 2.3 percent at 6,569.96 points in the previous session.
* Investors await U.S. job growth data later in the session. Employers probably added 240,000 jobs to their payrolls last month after November’s outsized 321,000 increase, according to a Reuters survey of economists.
* TESCO - Moody’s Investors Service downgraded Tesco to “junk” on Thursday, the first of the three major rating agencies to do so, on expectations profits will remain challenged due to structural shifts in the UK grocery market. Tesco shares surged 15 percent on Thursday after it announced cost cuts and asset sales.
* OLD MUTUAL - Anglo-South African financial services firm Old Mutual will discuss with partner Kotak Mahindra upping its stake in their Indian joint insurance venture following a rule change, Old Mutual’s chief executive said on Wednesday.
* RESTAURANT GROUP - The company said that for the 52 week period ending ending December 28, its total turnover was up 9.6 percent on the prior year. Like-for-like sales increased by 2.8 percent.
* LAIRD - The British electronic components maker said its expectations for 2014 remained on track.
* TED BAKER - The British designer clothing brand posted a 22.8 percent increase in retail sales for 8 weeks from Nov. 9 to Jan. 3, while its gross margins were in line with expectations. It also said sales since Christmas had been particularly strong and it expected to end year with a clean stock position.
* Focus will be on commodity stocks as oil prices headed for a seventh weekly loss, with key producers showing no signs of cutting output in the face of a global supply glut.
* London copper was little changed near 4-1/2-year lows and was set to chalk up a fourth weekly loss because of continuing worries about demand from top consumer China and fragile growth in Europe.
* China’s annual consumer inflation hovered at a near five-year low of 1.5 percent in December, little changed from November’s levels, signalling persistent weakness in the economy but giving policymakers more room to ease policy to support growth.
* German exports fell sharply in November and industrial output also declined, suggesting Europe’s largest economy ended 2014 on a weak note.
* TUI GROUP - The world’s largest leisure tourism company is buying luxury cruise ship MS Europa 2 for 278 million euros ($328 million) in cash and debt, a spokesman said on Thursday, to bolster results at its Hapag-Lloyd cruise business.
TODAY‘S UK PAPERS
> Financial Times
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