CORRECTED-UK Stocks-Factors to watch on Jan 4
(Corrects company name in fifth item to John Lewis from John Lewis of Hungerford)
Jan 4 (Reuters) - Britain's FTSE 100 index is seen opening down 37 points, or 0.59 percent lower on Monday, according to financial bookmakers. For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on
* The UK blue chip index closed 0.5 points lower at 6242.32 points on Thursday as weak commodity prices weighed on markets in the final quarter.
* SHIRE: Shire appears to be inching towards an agreement with Baxalta, the producer of specialist treatments for cancer and haemophilia, that the Dublin-based pharmaceuticals company has been trying to buy since last summer, The Times reported. (thetim.es/1JSdWAT)
* LLOYDS BANKING GROUP: Lloyds Banking Group is set to become a fully privately owned company by the summer for the first time since its 20 billion pounds ($29.47 billion) taxpayer-funded bailout as the UK sells its remaining 9 percent stake, The Times reported. (thetim.es/1JSec2K)
* TESCO: Tesco Plc's subsidiary in Turkey has decided to hang onto some of its stores instead of selling them to rival Turkish retailer Begendik after their performance improved strongly, it said on Saturday.
* RETAILERS: Record-breaking discounts on offer in the post-Christmas sales have so far failed to attract a rush of bargain hunters to the high street, raising fears that Marks and Spencer, John Lewis and Next PLC will be forced to report disappointing trading figures for the festive period, The Guardian reported. (bit.ly/1JSeB5m)
* BP: The slump in global oil prices could hit bottom in early 2016 although prices are likely to remain low for the next couple of years, BP Chief Executive Officer Bob Dudley said. Continuación...