(adds futures, companies items)
Sept 30 Britain's FTSE 100 index is seen opening down
0.9 percent on Friday, according to financial bookmakers, with futures
down 1 percent ahead of the cash market open.
* The UK blue chip index closed up 1 percent on Thursday at 6,919.42,
boosted by heavyweight oil companies after a decision by OPEC to curb output for
the first time since 2008.
* AIRBUS: Airbus Group said on Friday it would merge with its
planemaking unit, strip out bureaucracy and simplify its brand, marking a break
with its complex corporate roots as it prepares for tougher expected
* AXA/ALLIANZ: AXA and Allianz SE have advanced to the
second stage of bidding for a Standard Chartered STAN.L distribution deal that
would enable sale of general insurance products through the bank's Asian
branches, people familiar with the matter said.
* IG GROUP: Online trading company IG Group Holdings Plc said it had
agreed to buy news and research portal DailyFX and its associated assets from
U.S. retail broker FXCM Inc FXCM.N for $40 million.
* SPEEDY HIRE: Industrial tools and equipment rental company Speedy Hire
sees half yearly pretax profit ahead of the company's expectations,
helped by job cuts.
* GULF KEYSTONE: Gulf Keystone Petroleum, one of the foreign oil
firms present in Iraqi Kursdistan, has received a long-awaited $15 million
payment from the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) for oil sales in July, the
company said on Thursday.
* SHELL: Royal Dutch Shell plans to invest $300 million a year in
Argentina through 2020 in exploration as well as refining, distribution and
marketing, the company said in a statement on Thursday.
* RBS: Royal Bank of Scotland announced on Friday a sweeping
overhaul of its structure and banking brands as it outlined plans to separate
its retail operations from riskier parts of its business by 2019.
Deutsche Bank AG, UBS Group AG and Royal Bank of
Scotland Group Plc are looking at selling their minority stakes in bond
and derivatives trading system Tradeweb Markets LLC, Bloomberg reported, citing
people familiar with the matter. bloom.bg/2dhojGR
* JOHN LEWIS: British department store chain John Lewis
will have to appoint a new leader after Managing Director Andy Street was chosen
by the ruling Conservative Party as its candidate for mayor of the West Midlands
in central England.
* BRITISH STEEL: British Steel has returned to profit in its first 100 days
of trading after being spun off as a loss-making division in April by India's
Tata Steel after it decided to exit the troubled British steel sector.
* HINKLEY POINT: A $24-billion deal to build Britain's first new nuclear
power station in decades was signed behind closed doors in London on Thursday in
a private ceremony that underlined Prime Minister Theresa May's cautious
approach to the Franco-Chinese project.
* NUCLEAR PLANT: China General Nuclear Power Corp (CGN) expects its plans
for a new China-led nuclear power plant in Britain to win government approval
within five years, the firm's chairman said in comments reported by state media
late on Thursday.
* BREXIT: Nissan, which builds around a third of Britain's total
car output at its plant in Sunderland, northeast England, wants Britain to
pledge compensation for any tax barriers resulting from its decision to leave
the European Union, or the Japanese automaker could scrap a potential new
investment in the country's biggest car plant, its CEO said on
* BREXIT: Britain will have no choice but to stick with European Union
banking laws when it leaves the bloc to avoid blowing a "huge hole" in its
regulatory system, a financial industry lobbyist said on Thursday.
* EQUITY DEALS: Global equity fundraising rose in the third quarter, Thomson
Reuters data showed on Friday, but failed to make up for the sharp slowdown of
the first half of 2016, when volatile markets deterred listings.
* UK CONSUMER CONFIDENCE: British consumer morale rocketed back to
pre-Brexit levels in September, a survey found, confounding expectations that
the vote to leave the EU would wreak more lasting damage on Briton's willingness
* OIL: Oil prices dropped on Friday as investors took profits following a
7-percent rise in the last two sessions, amid doubts that OPEC's first planned
output cut in eight years would make a substantial dent in the global crude
* HOUSING: British house prices rose more slowly in September than in
August, according to figures from mortgage lender Nationwide, adding to signs of
a cooling in the housing market after voters decided in June to leave the
* METALS: Lead and tin steadied near multi-month highs on Friday and were
heading for their biggest quarterly gains in at least three years, bolstered by
tighter supply and falling inventories.
* For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on: cpurl://apps.cp./cms/?pageId=livemarkets
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(Reporting by Noor Zainab Hussain in Bengaluru; Editing by Amrutha Gayathri and