UPDATE 1-UK Stocks-Factors to watch on Feb 4
(Adds futures, company news items)
Feb 4 (Reuters) - Britain's FTSE 100 index is seen opening up 27 points, or 0.4 percent, on Thursday, according to financial bookmakers, with futures up 1.7 percent ahead of the cash market open. For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on
* The UK blue chip index closed 84.87 points lower on Wednesday at 5837.14, pulled lower by financial stocks, with banks hitting their lowest levels in over 4 years and Hargreaves Lansdown among the top losers following a mixed earnings update.
* SHELL: Europe's largest oil company reported its lowest annual income in at least 13 years on Thursday as slumping oil prices hit profits.
* ASTRAZENECA: The British drugmaker expects a low to mid single-digit percentage decline in earnings in 2016 as the arrival of cheap generic copies of cholesterol fighter Crestor offsets growth in sales of new medicines, the said on Thursday.
* VODAFONE: The mobile phone company met expectations with a 1.4 percent rise in revenue in its third quarter, its sixth consecutive quarter of growth, as recovery in Europe gained pace.
* SSE: British power producer SSE said it would likely close most of the units at its 1,995-megawatt Fiddler's Ferry coal-fired plant from April 1, despite gaining a government capacity contract designed to incentivise back-up plants to stay online.
* COMPASS GROUP: The world's biggest catering firm posted a 5.9 percent rise in first-quarter group revenue on the back of strong demand for its services in the United States and Europe. Continuación...