(Adds company news item)
Jan 26 (Reuters) - Britain’s FTSE 100 index is seen opening up 13 to 18 points, or as much as 0.3 percent higher, according to financial bookmakers, with futures up 0.2 percent ahead of the cash market open.
* The UK blue chip index closed up 0.2 percent at 7,164.43 points on Wednesday.
* ANGLO AMERICAN: Anglo American on Thursday reported an increase in production across its portfolio and said it would achieve a 2 percent increase in copper production for 2016 as a whole after a 4 percent increase in the last quarter.
* ST JAMES PLACE: British wealth manager St James’s Place said on Thursday total funds under management rose to 75.3 billion pounds in the fourth quarter, boosted by record net inflows across its business and strong investment gains.
* WHITBREAD: Whitbread Plc posted a 8.6 percent rise in total sales for the third quarter as underlying sales at its Costa Coffee chain strengthened due to new advertising and promotional campaigns.
* RYANAIR: Ryanair is planning for major disruption in its business as a result of Brexit including the outside possibility it may have to move its entire UK fleet to continental Europe, Chief Executive Michael O‘Leary told Reuters in an interview.
* RBS: Royal Bank of Scotland is demanding that thousands of shareholders suing the bank over a 12 billion pound ($15 billion) cash call in 2008 prove they have appropriate insurance cover to meet the hefty risks of a trial now slated for May.
* SKY: Discovery Communications Inc’s UK unit said on Wednesday negotiations with Sky Plc for a new carriage deal reached an impasse over a price dispute, threatening a blackout of Discovery channels from Sky’s platform.
* SKY: Sky, the European pay-TV group that has accepted a buy-out offer from shareholder Rupert Murdoch, reported 679 million pounds in first-half operating profit, down 9 percent, after it absorbed a big hike in Premier League soccer costs.
* KAZ: Kazakhstan copper company Kaz Minerals said it had exceeded its full-year copper guidance in 2016 with 73 percent year-on-year output growth as new projects came onstream.
* RBS: Royal Bank of Scotland RBS.L has taken a 3.1 billion pound ($3.92 billion) provision as it prepares to settle claims in the United States that it mis-sold toxic mortgage-backed securities in the run up to the 2008 financial crisis.
* UNILEVER: Unilever, reported lower-than-expected fourth-quarter sales on Thursday, hurt by demonetisation in India and an economic slowdown in Brazil.
* 3i: Investment company 3i Group’s total return on assets reached 24.1 percent in its third quarter to Dec 31, it said on Thursday, helped by strong performance in its private equity division.
* SAGE: British software firm Sage Group is reviewing options for its underperforming U.S. payments business, including a possible sale, the company said in a first-quarter trading statement on Thursday.
* BT: BT Group Plc was hit on Wednesday with at least two shareholder lawsuits in the United States, after one-fifth of the telecommunications company’s market value was wiped out in a single day amid a growing accounting scandal in Italy.
* BRITAIN PROPERTY: Demand from overseas investors is expected to support British commercial property this year even as the UK prepares to leave the European Union, an industry survey showed on Thursday.
* BRITAIN CAR: British car production reached a 17-year high last year, but the country’s vote to leave the European Union contributed to a roughly 33 percent drop in investment in the sector, a car industry body said on Thursday.
* EX-DIVS: No FTSE 100 companies will go ex-dividend on Thursday, although several mid-caps will go ex-div, after which investors will no longer qualify for the latest dividend payout.
* For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on: cpurl://apps.cp./cms/?pageId=livemarkets
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 * For Top News : topnews.reuters.com (Reporting by Rahul B in Bengaluru; Editing by Amrutha Gayathri)