Dec 18 (Reuters) - Britain’s FTSE 100 index is expected to open 2 points lower at 7,524 on Wednesday, according to financial bookmakers.
* BHP: Global miner BHP Group is feeling its way back into commodities trading, making a dedicated hire to help it manage a base metals book in Singapore as it seeks to boost returns and manage transaction risk, two people with knowledge of the matter said.
* BAT: British American Tobacco (BAT) must stop advertising its e-cigarettes from any public account on Instagram, including influencers’ accounts, the UK’s advertising watchdog ruled on Wednesday.
* METRO BANK: Metro Bank said on Tuesday Vernon Hill, the founding chairman of the struggling British lender, had stepped down as a non-executive director.
* GOLD: Gold prices were largely subdued on Wednesday, with investors awaiting more details on U.S.-China trade deal, while palladium retreated from last session’s record peak.
* OIL: Oil retreated on Wednesday after rising more than 1% in the previous session as U.S. industry data showed a surprise build in crude stocks, but hopes for firmer demand next year checked a deeper fall in prices.
* The UK blue-chip index eked out a 0.1% gain on Tuesday, lifted by trade-sensitive stocks amid optimism about a proper trade agreement between China and the United States.
* UK CORPORATE DIARY: None
* For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on:
> Financial Times
> Other business headlines (Reporting by Pushkala Aripaka in Bengaluru)