(Adds details, updates futures)
Feb 23 Britain's FTSE 100 index is seen opening 4 points
higher, or up 0.05 percent on Thursday, according to Financial spreadbetters,
with futures up 0.06 percent ahead of the cash market open.
* The blue-chip FTSE 100 index ended up 0.4 percent at 7302.25
points, as Lloyds reported its highest annual profit in a decade and
Unilever promised a far-reaching review.
* BARCLAYS: Barclays reported a surprise increase in its core
capital ratio on Thursday, as the key measure of financial strength rose to 12.4
percent against analysts' expectations it would only climb to 11.8
* BARCLAYS AFRICA: Barclays PLC has agreed to pay Barclays Africa
12.8 billion rand ($988 million) to fund investments required to separate it
from its African unit, Barclays Africa said on Thursday.
* LLOYDS: The British government said on Thursday it has further reduced its
stake in Lloyds Banking Group, a day after the bank posted its highest
profit since before the 2007-2009 global financial crisis.
* GLENCORE: Miner and trader Glencore reported an 18 percent
increase in core profits for 2016 on Thursday and said the company had never
been so well positioned, although an ill-timed coal hedge had eaten into energy
* BAE: Britain's BAE Systems said it expected increased defence
budgets to boost its earnings by 5-10 percent this year after it met market
expectations with a 7 percent rise in 2016.
* BAT: British American Tobacco, the second-largest international
tobacco company, reported a slight increase in full-year cigarette and tobacco
sales volumes on Thursday.
* RELX: European information and analytics provider Relx raised its
dividend by a more-than-expected 21 percent on Thursday after meeting 2016
* CENTRICA: Centrica, Britain's largest energy supplier, reported a
4 percent rise in annual adjusted profit on Thursday, slightly ahead of analyst
estimates, and said debt levels could be low enough this year to allow an
increase in its dividend.
* RSA: Insurer RSA posted a 25 percent rise in 2016 operating profit
to an above-forecast 655 million pounds ($814.49 million) due to strong
performance in most of its core businesses, and raised its target for return on
* INTU PROPERTIES: British shopping centre landlord Intu Properties
posted an unchanged full-year NAV from last year, as values and demand
for Britain's top malls stabilised against a weakening broader market following
the country's vote to leave the EU.
* MONDI: South African paper and packaging company Mondi's
2016 underlying profit rose, helped by good performance in all its businesses
despite pricing pressure in a number of key paper grades.
* RATHBONE: British wealth manager Rathbone Brothers said funds
under management rose 17.1 percent in 2016 to 34.2 billion pounds ($42.55
billion), boosted by gains in the British stock market in the second half of the
* HOWDEN JOINERY: Modular kitchen maker Howden Joinery Group Plc
reported a slower full-year revenue growth for its UK depots, dragged down by
weaker consumer confidence following Britain's vote to leave the European
* PLAYTECH: Gambling technology company Playtech Plc said full-year
revenue rose 12.5 percent, aided by strong performance in its gaming division.
* BANK OF ENGLAND: Bank of England Deputy Governor Jon Cunliffe warned on
Wednesday that requiring financial instruments to be cleared in a country that
uses the currency in which they are denominated would bump up costs and splinter
* BANK OF ENGLAND/INSURERS: EU capital rules for insurers need some tweaks
but are not a deterrent to investment in infrastructure as some insurers' claim,
the Bank of England said on Wednesday.
* PURPLEBRICKS: British online real estate agent Purplebricks Group Plc
said it intended to raise funds through a share issue to expand into
the United States.
* AO WORLD: AO World, the British online electricals retailer, said
on Wednesday its founder John Roberts had stepped down as chief executive but
would remain on the board in a new executive role.
* OIL: U.S. oil futures rose nearly 1 percent on Thursday after data
released by an industry group showed a surprise decline in U.S. crude stocks as
imports fell, lending support to the view that a global glut is ending.
* BHP: The first attempt at an acquisition by Australia's South32 S32.AX
following its spinoff from BHP Billiton, has raised competition
concerns over control of the local coking coal market.
* EX-DIVS: Carnival, Diageo, Easyjet GlaxoSmithKline
, Rio Tinto and Lancashire to go ex-dividend. According to
Reuters calculations at current market prices, the effect of the resulting
adjustment to prices by market-makers would take 12.3 points off the index.
* 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 Sanjeeban Sarkar in Bengaluru; Editing by Sunil Nair)