(Updates factors, adds news item)
Dec 21 (Reuters) - Britain’s FTSE 100 index is seen opening lower 12 points at 7,032 on Wednesday, according to financial bookmakers, with futures down 0.13 percent ahead of the cash market open.
* The UK blue chip index closed up 0.4 percent at 7,043.96 points on Tuesday, helped by gains in Carnival and strength in the banking sector as Lloyds rose after a deal to buy a credit card business.
* BANK PENALTY: The Swiss Competition Commission (COMCO) said it had fined several European and U.S. banks over four instances of interest rate cartels. Royal Bank of Scotland received full immunity for revealing the existence of the cartel to the COMCO. Barclays was also fined 29.8 million francs for participating in a cartel in euro interest rate derivatives.
* MEGGITT/QINETIQ: British car and aeroplane parts maker Meggitt said it had sold its defence unit to UK firm QinetiQ for 57.5 million pounds ($71 million) in cash, as part of a plan to focus on sectors where it has a leading position.
* BHP BILLITON: Brazilian iron ore miner Vale said on Tuesday it signed a non-binding agreement with BHP Billiton to allow the use of its Timbopeba pit to deposit tailings from iron miner Samarco when that company restarts operations.
* ROLLS-ROYCE: Rolls-Royce Corp of Indianapolis, Indiana, a unit of Rolls-Royce Holdings Plc, has been awarded a $408 million modification to a contract to provide maintenance support for V-22 AE1107C engines for the U.S. Marine Corps and Air Force, the Pentagon said in a statement on Tuesday.
* UK INFLATION: The British public’s long-term expectation for inflation rose to 3 percent in December, a more than two-year high, according to a closely watched survey by polling company YouGov.
* For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on: cpurl://apps.cp./cms/?pageId=livemarkets
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