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LONDON Oct 9 (Reuters) - Britain’s FTSE 100 index is seen opening 51 to 58 points higher, or up as much as 0.9 percent, on Friday, according to financial bookmakers. For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on
* The UK blue chip index closed 0.6 percent higher at 6,374.82 points on Thursday.
* Futures for the index were up 0.9 percent by 0632 GMT.
* GLENCORE - Commodities giant Glencore said on Friday it will cut 500,000 tonnes of zinc production, or around 4 percent of global supply, in its latest move to withstand weak commodities prices.
* LLOYDS BANKING GROUP - Britain’s government said on Friday it had sold off another 1 percent of its stake in Lloyds Banking Group, trimming its total interest in the bailed-out lender to below 11 percent.
* ROYAL BANK OF SCOTLAND - The bank said that it plans to convert UK government B-shares into ordinary shares.
* LADBROKES - Bookmaker Ladbrokes Plc said it had signed a 1.35 billion pound ($2.07 billion) facility with banks to fund its proposed merger with Gala Coral.
* NATIONAL GRID - The utility company set the initial conversion price for bonds due in 2020.
* XP POWER - The company said that its Q3 trading was in line with its expectations.
* PETROFAC - The company terminated its contract with ZPMC.
* VEDANTA RESOURCES - The company said that it was focused on optimising operating and capital expenses, and increasing free cash flow and reducing net debt.
* SYNETICS - Nigel Poultney, finance director, will be retiring from the company’s board, and from the role of finance director, at the end of the current financial year on 30 Nov 2015. Mike Stilwell, currently Synectics’ group financial controller, will be appointed to the board and promoted to the role of finance director on 1 Dec 2015.
* The chairman of an influential committee of British lawmakers has asked the country’s financial regulator for assurance that a new banking tax will not damage competition within the industry.
* Quarterly comprehensive car insurance premiums in Britain rose 4.8 percent, the biggest rise since 2010, according to Confused.com’s car price insurance index.
* METALS PRICES - London zinc surged 6 percent on Friday after top miner Glencore said it would slash its annual output by a third, fanning sentiment that was already brightened by minutes showing the Federal Reserve was in no hurry to raise rates.
* OIL PRICES - Crude futures rose in early Asian trade, with U.S. oil climbing above $50 a barrel, after an influential forecaster predicted that a market rally was not far off and U.S. Federal Reserve minutes suggested there was no hurry to raise rates.
TODAY‘S UK PAPERS
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> 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 (Reporting by Kit Rees)