(Updates futures, adds company news items)
Jan 20 (Reuters) - Britain's FTSE 100 index is seen opening up 9 points at 7,217 on Friday, according to financial bookmakers, with futures up 0.08 percent ahead of the cash market open.
* The UK blue chip index closed down 0.54 percent at 7208.44 points on Thursday, dragged down by British parcel and postal firm Royal Mail, whose results were badly received.
* CLOSE BROTHERS: British lender Close Brothers Group said it expected to report strong results for the first half, driven by strength in its banking division and higher trading income from market maker Winterflood.
* SYNTHOMER: Chemicals maker Synthomer Plc estimated 2016 underlying pretax profit at constant currencies ahead of market expectations after fourth-quarter trading was boosted by stronger-than-expected trading in Europe and Asia.
* SDL: Translation software maker SDL Plc said 2016 results would be slightly ahead of market expectations, helped by a weaker pound.
* ROYAL BANK OF SCOTLAND: Japanese financial services firm Orix Corp has agreed to buy $290 million worth of shipping loans from Royal Bank of Scotland, sources with direct knowledge of the deal told Reuters on Friday.
* ANTOFAGASTA: Chilean copper miner Antofagasta said on Thursday it would sell its 40 percent stake in the Alto Maipo hydroelectric power project to partner AES Gener, exiting the project entirely.
* VODAFONE: The Czech telecoms regulator CTU is pushing O2 Czech Republic and Vodafone to cut wholesale prices for mobile internet services (LTE) charged to virtual operators, warning they could lose frequencies won in a past auction.
* BREXIT: European Union trade commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom said on Thursday it would likely take a couple of years to negotiate a trade deal with the United Kingdom after it leaves the bloc.
* For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on: cpurl://apps.cp./cms/?pageId=livemarkets
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