(Updates futures and UBM, adds company news events)
Dec 15 (Reuters) - Britain’s FTSE 100 futures were up 0.94 percent by 0750 GMT ahead of the cash market open. For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on
* The UK blue chip index was down 1.3 percent at 5,874.06 at its close, its eight straight session of losses, pulled lower by a drop in oil and mining shares as commodity prices continued to fall.
* STANDARD CHARTERED: Standard Chartered has axed at least half a dozen oil and gas advisory banking roles in recent weeks, ending an eight-year attempt to build a global energy M&A team, people familiar with the matter told Reuters.
* RBS: Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc has been approached by bidders for Williams & Glyn and is weighing the option of selling the consumer business instead of holding an initial public offering next year, according to two people with knowledge of the plans, Bloomberg reported on Monday. (bloom.bg/1Z83XjR)
* RIO TINTO: Rio Tinto locked in $4.4 billion in financing to fund a massive expansion of a copper mine in Mongolia and a final decision whether to proceed with construction will be made in the first half of 2016.
* AGGREKO: Temporary power supplier Aggreko pulled out of a tender to provide generators to the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro next year, the spokesman for Rio 2016 told Reuters, dealing a major blow to organizers rushing to secure an energy source for the world’s largest sporting event.
* AVEVA: British data engineering and design firm Aveva said it terminated a deal with France’s Schneider Electric about a combination of its own business with the latter’s software operations.
* UBM: UBM Plc said it had agreed to sell its press release distributor PR Newswire to Cision, a business controlled by GTCR Canyon Holdings, for $841 million, allowing UBM to focus on its events business.
* SHELL: China’s CNOOC and Royal Dutch Shell have agreed to double the capacity of their jointly owned ethylene plant in China’s Guangdong province, the companies said on Tuesday.
* SPORTS DIRECT: Sports Direct, the British sportswear retailer controlled by high profile businessman Mike Ashley, came under fire in the British parliament on Monday over allegations it has not been paying the minimum wage.
* GLAXOSMITHKLINE: Amgen Inc on Monday said it had reached a deal with British drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline to reacquire the sales rights to three of its products in 48 countries, including Australia as well as markets in Asia, South America and Europe.
* ANTOFAGASTA: China’s top integrated copper producer Jiangxi Copper and Chilean miner Antofagasta Minerals have agreed 2016 treatment and refining charges 9 percent lower than this year’s fees, as global mines cut output due to low prices.
* CARPETRIGHT: Britain’s biggest floor coverings retailer Carpetright reported a 34 percent rise in first half profit, driven by improved sales in its key home market, and said it was on track to achieve full-year expectations.
* PETROFAC: British oilfield services company Petrofac said its integrated energy services division, which mainly provides consulting, will post a loss in 2016 as the continued slump in crude oil slows down its business.
* EUROPEAN INSURERS: Domestic regulators are increasingly “gold-plating” new European insurance capital rules by adding their own more stringent requirements, according to a survey of insurance trade associations.
* EU REFERENDUM: Prime Minister David Cameron’s proposed European Union reforms would not fundamentally change Britain’s relationship with the bloc and there is no certainty anything promised would actually be delivered, a committee of lawmakers said on Tuesday.
* UK ANNUITIES: Britain’s finance ministry will introduce a secondary market in annuities from April 2017, it said on Tuesday, extending a shake-up in the pensions market which has curbed demand for these fixed-rate pensions products.
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 (Compiled by Noor Zainab Hussain and Esha Vaish in Bengaluru)