May 25, 2016 / 6:32 AM / 2 years ago

UPDATE 2-UK Stocks-Factors to watch on May 25

(Updates futures, adds company news items)

May 25 (Reuters) - Britain’s FTSE 100 index is seen opening up 53 points, or 0.9 percent, on Wednesday, according to financial bookmakers, with futures up 0.63 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 82.83 points, or 1.4 percent, on Tuesday at 6,219.26 points, bolstered by a rally in banking stocks and a well-received trading statement from Kingfisher.

* MARKS & SPENCER: British retailer Marks & Spencer said on Wednesday its new boss’s plan to turn around the firm’s underperforming clothing and homewares business would impact short-term profit.

* PENNON GROUP: British water utility Pennon Group Plc said its full year pre-tax profit grew marginally, as strength in its energy recovery unit offset lower water prices set by Britain’s regulator.

* BABCOCK: Britain’s Babcock International said full-year profit rose 10 percent, underpinned by a strong performance across its engineering and support services business and a robust order book.

* DIXONS CARPHONE: British consumer electricals and mobile phone retailer Dixons Carphone estimated full-year profit towards the top half of its previous range, boosted by strong performance in its mobile phone business in the UK.

* ZOOPLA: British property website Zoopla said it expects annual core earnings at the ‘top end’ of market expectations after a 53 percent jump in mid-year profit lifted by increased traffic on its site and more agents listing properties on it.

* SERCO: British outsourcing firm Serco Group Plc forecast 2016 profit ahead of current market expectations, citing the benefits of several contracts running longer than previous anticipated and others being more profitable.

* AB INBEV/SABMILLER: The world’s largest brewer, Anheuser-Busch InBev , gained EU antitrust approval on Tuesday for its $100 billion-plus acquisition of SABMiller on condition it sell almost the whole of SABMiller’s beer business in Europe.

* SHANKS/VAN GANSEWINKEL: Britain’s Shanks Group Plc is considering a bid for Van Gansewinkel Groep BV, Benelux’s largest waste management company, for an undisclosed sum, the companies said.

* HSBC: HSBC Holdings will issue $2 billion of bonds that would convert into shares if the bank’s capital strength falls below a certain level, it said on Wednesday.

* BREXIT: Britons are evenly split on whether the country should remain or leave the European Union, a YouGov poll showed on Wednesday, as the In campaign struggles with poor voter support for its leader, Prime Minister David Cameron.

* COPPER: London copper rose on Wednesday for the second straight session, buoyed by brightening economic signals in the United States that forced shorts to cover, and showing near-term resilience to a persistently strong dollar.

* OIL: Oil futures pushed closer to $50 a barrel on Wednesday, with U.S. crude hitting its highest in over seven months after industry data suggested a larger-than-expected drawdown in U.S. crude inventories last week.


> Financial Times

> Other business headlines (Reporting by Aastha Agnihotri in Bengaluru; Editing by Sunil Nair)

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