(Adds company news)
LONDON, Nov 19 (Reuters) - Britain’s FTSE 100 index is seen opening up 28 points, or 0.5 percent higher on Thursday, according to financial bookmakers, with futures 0.6 percent higher ahead of the cash market open. For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on
* The blue chip FTSE 100 index closed up 10.21 points, or 0.2 percent, to 6,278.97 points on Wednesday, buoyed in late trade by a rise on Wall Street and a rise in the oil sector, even as tourism-related stocks were under pressure.
* BHP BILLITON - Mining giant BHP Billiton said on Thursday its priority was to maintain a healthy balance sheet, but made no direct comment on future dividends amid speculation that tumbling commodity prices will force it to cut its payout.
BHP Billiton CEO Andrew Mackenzie said the company is committed to getting Samarco, its iron ore joint venture in Brazil, back on its feet following a dam disaster nearly two weeks ago and has no plan to walk away from its holding.
* BARCLAYS - Barclays Plc will pay an additional $150 million to New York State’s financial regulator to resolve allegations that it rigged foreign exchange trading by putting the bank’s interests ahead of those of its clients, the regulator said on Wednesday.
* ROYAL MAIL - Britain’s postal firm Royal Mail said it expected underlying operating costs for its UK letters and parcels business to be at least 1 percent lower for the full year after it posted flat revenue for the first half.
* SHELL, BG - Royal Dutch Shell cleared a major hurdle to its $70 billion takeover of BG Group on Thursday, winning a green light from Australia’s competition watchdog, which said the deal would not change the dynamics of the domestic market.
* STANDARD CHARTERED - British bank Standard Chartered will pay about 55 million pounds ($84 million) to banks underwriting its $5.1 billion rights issue, according to details released on Wednesday.
* LONMIN - Lonmin shareholders will on Thursday decide whether to approve a deeply-discounted $407 million share issue, as the beleaguered platinum producer seeks cash to stay afloat.
* CRH - Irish building materials group CRH expects strong growth in the United States to drive an increase in full-year earnings of around 25 percent, and more when a string of recent acquisitions are included.
* JOHNSON MATTHEY - The world’s biggest maker of metal catalysts for car emission control devices announced on Thursday it will pay 305 million pounds ($466 million) to shareholders as a special dividend after selling two businesses.
* ELECTROCOMPONENTS - Electrocomponents Plc, a distributor of electronic products for engineers, said it has initiated a performance improvement plan after posting disappointing first-half results.
* POUNDLAND - British single price retailer Poundland on Thursday reported a 26 percent fall in first-half profit, hurt by higher store opening costs and said trading conditions in its third quarter so far have been “highly volatile”.
* MOTHERCARE - Baby goods retailer Mothercare more than doubled its half-year profit on Thursday on strong UK margin growth as the turnaround plan for its troubled British business made progress.
* DOMINO‘S PIZZA - Britain’s biggest pizza delivery firm Domino’s Pizza Group Plc said Chief Financial Officer Paul Doughty has resigned and Chief Executive David Wild will assume the finance responsibility while the company looks for a replacement.
* EUROMONEY Euromoney Institutional Investor Plc said Executive Chairman Andrew Rashbass would take on the role of chief executive with immediate effect.
* The total value of assets managed by Britain’s investment management industry hit a fresh record of $7.1 trillion in the first half of 2015 and year-on-year growth should top 9 percent, an industry body said on Thursday.
* The number of cars built in Britain fell slightly in October as an increase in exports failed to outweigh a drop in demand at home, industry data showed on Thursday.
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 * BridgeStation: view story .134 For more information on Top News visit topnews.reuters.com (Reporting by Alistair Smout)