(Updates futures, adds company news items)
April 28 (Reuters) - Britain’s FTSE 100 index is seen opening down by 23 points, or 0.4 percent, on Thursday, according to financial bookmakers, with futures down 0.40 percent ahead of the cash market open. For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on
* The UK blue chip index closed up 35.39 points, or 0.6 percent, at 6,319.91 on Wednesday, boosted by strong results from drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline, while banking stocks were mixed as traders digested latest figures from Barclays and Standard Chartered.
* ANGLO AMERICAN: Miner Anglo American said on Thursday it had agreed to sell its niobium and phosphates businesses to China Molybdenum for $1.5 billion in cash to reduce its debt level.
* SCHRODERS: Schroders, Britain’s biggest listed asset manager, posted a rise in first-quarter assets on Thursday, boosted by investment returns and inflows from institutional clients.
* LLOYDS BANKING GROUP: Lloyds Banking Group reported underlying profits in line with expectations on Thursday, keeping first-quarter revenues steady and cutting bad debts despite the challenging economic environment.
* WPP: A step up in new business in the United States helped Britain’s WPP , the world’s biggest advertising company, to report first-quarter like-for-like net sales growth in line with forecasts.
* TAYLOR WIMPEY: Housebuilder Taylor Wimpey Plc said that the uncertainty surrounding Britain’s upcoming referendum on its EU membership had not impacted trading yet, as it reported a higher order book for the first four months of the year.
* Tullow Oil: Oil and gas producer Tullow Oil has reduced its annual capital expenditure budget by another $100 million to $1 billion and may cut spending further as it adjusts its balance sheet to weak oil prices.
* TUI: European tourism group TUI has agreed a deal to sell its Hotelbeds unit to private equity group Cinven and Canada Pension Plan Investment Board for 1.191 billion euros ($1.35 billion) in cash, it said on Thursday.
* LONDON STOCK EXCHANGE GROUP: The London Stock Exchange Group and Deutsche Boerse said their planned $30 billion merger was on track and steadily winning support, despite a looming UK vote on continued membership in the European Union.
* GENEL: Genel Energy, chaired by former BP head Tony Hayward, is betting on a major deal with Turkey to jointly develop gas fields in Iraqi Kurdistan which will help Ankara reduce its reliance on Russian supplies after relations soured with Moscow.
* VICTREX: Invibio, a division of Victrex PLC that makes a key polymer used in spinal and other medical implants, agreed to settle allegations that it demanded exclusive contracts to illegally maintain its high market share, the Federal Trade Commission said on Wednesday.
* ROLLS-ROYCE: Bain & Company consultants have given the top executives of Rolls-Royce Holdings Plc a study, which says that the engineering company could boost profits by 1 billion pounds and match the profitability of US rival GE, the Telegraph reported, citing sources. (bit.ly/1Tx9mOM)
* UK BREXIT: International investors have halted almost all their purchases of British commercial property ahead of the European Union membership referendum, a survey showed on Thursday, adding to signs that the vote is taking a toll on the economy.
* UK INFLATION: Expectations among people in Britain for inflation over the coming year rose in April to their highest level since July of last year following a pick-up in official inflation data from below zero last year.
* EX-DIVS: Barratt Developments Plc, Informa Plc, ITV Plc , Legal & General Group Plc, Merlin Entertainments Plc, Relx Plc, Travis Perkins Plc and Unilever Plc will trade without entitlement to their latest dividend pay-out on Thursday, trimming 7.52 points off the FTSE 100 according to Reuters calculations
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 * BridgeStation: view story .134 For more information on Top News visit topnews.reuters.com (Reporting by Esha Vaish and Rahul B in Bengaluru; Editing by Sunil Nair)