LONDON, Jan 29 (Reuters) - Britain's FTSE 100 index is seen opening 63 to 81 points lower, or down as much as 1.2 percent, on Thursday, according to financial bookmakers. For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on
* The UK blue chip index, which climbed to its highest level since mid-September on Tuesday, closed 0.2 percent higher at 6,825.94 points on Wednesday.
* The U.S. Federal Reserve said the economy was expanding "at a solid pace" with strong job gains. The statement took investors by surprise and signalled the Fed remained firmly on track to raise interest rates this year. U.S. equities reacted negatively and fell 0.9 to 1.4 percent.
* THE LONDON STOCK EXCHANGE GROUP - The company plans to put Russell Investments up for sale in mid-February and hopes to fetch around $1.4 billion for the unit, two sources told Reuters on Wednesday.
* GLAXOSMITHKLINE - First results from a human trial of an Ebola vaccine from GlaxoSmithKline show it is safe and generates an immune response, scientists said on Wednesday, but larger trials are needed to see if it protects and if a booster is needed.
* GLENCORE - The world's largest exporter of thermal coal is considering closing some of its South African coal mines and laying off workers due to deteriorating market conditions and falling prices.
* Oil remained weak in Asia on Thursday after data showing record U.S. stockpiles sent prices tumbling to the lowest level in nearly six years in the previous session and analysts said a global glut would continue to keep the market under pressure.
> 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 Atul Prakash; editing by Blaise Robinson)