May 22, 2020 / 5:21 AM / 6 days ago

UK Stocks-Factors to watch on May 22

    May 22(Reuters) - Britain's FTSE 100 index is seen
opening 47 points lower at 5,968 on Friday, according to
financial bookmakers.
    * British consumer confidence in early May dipped back down
to its joint-lowest level since the global financial crisis in
2009, despite moves by the government to start loosening its
coronavirus lockdown, a survey showed on Friday.
    * Britain's nearly 5,000 new-car showrooms should be allowed
to reopen urgently, an automotive industry body said on Friday,
lobbying the government ahead of the next stage in plans to lift
some coronavirus lockdown measures.
    * British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has instructed civil
servants to make plans to end UK's reliance on China for vital
medical supplies and other strategic imports in light of the
coronavirus outbreak, The Times newspaper reported on Friday.

    * Health secretary Matt Hancock said on Thursday he was
confident that a COVID-19 track and trace system would be
operating by June 1, allowing lockdown rules to be eased without
risking a spike in infections.
    * Britain said on Thursday it had agreed to acquire over 10
million coronavirus antibody tests from Roche and Abbott
 which would be rolled out to health and care workers
from next week.
    * METALS: Copper prices fell on Friday as mounting Sino-U.S.
tensions and concerns about a rebound from the coronavirus-led
economic slump curbed risk appetite and demand for metals.

    * GOLD: Gold steadied on Friday as an escalation in
U.S.-China tensions underpinned bullion's safe-haven appeal,
although positive economic data and easing lockdowns in some
countries set up the precious metal for a weekly drop.

    * OIL: Oil prices slumped on Friday after China's decision
to omit an economic growth target for 2020 renewed concerns that
the fallout from the coronavirus pandemic will continue to
depress fuel demand in the world's second-largest oil user.

    * The UK blue-chip index ended lower on Thursday as
optimism faded about any speedy recovery from the
coronavirus-induced economic slump, while U.S.-China trade
tensions returned firmly to the forefront of investors' minds. 
    
    
    * UK CORPORATE DIARY:   

 United Utilities           FY Earnings Release
 Future PLC        <FUTR.L  HY Earnings Release
                   >        
 Spectris PLC               Q1 Trading update
 Burberry PLC      <BRBY.L  Q4 Preliminary Earnings Release
                   >        
 Close Brothers    <CBRO.L  Q3 Trading update
                   >        
  
    * For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please
click on:
        
    TODAY'S UK PAPERS
    > Financial Times                     
    > Other business headlines            

 (Reporting by Aby Jose Koilparambil in Bengaluru)
  
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