June 4, 2014 / 6:32 AM / 5 years ago

UK Stocks-Factors to watch on June 4

(Adds futures prices, company news)

LONDON, June 4 (Reuters) - Britain’s FTSE 100 index is seen opening around 12 points lower, or down 0.2 percent, on Wednesday, according to financial bookmakers. For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on

* Futures for the index are up 0.3 percent at 0651 GMT.

* The following FTSE 100 companies will go ex-dividend on Wednesday, after which investors will no longer qualify for the latest dividend payout: Associated British Foods, National Grid and WPP.

* The UK blue chip index closed 0.4 percent weaker at 6,836.30 points in the previous session, but not far from a 14-year high of 6,894.88 on May 15. The index is less than 2 percent below its record high of 6,950.60 set in late 1999.

* Investors await the Markit/CIPS services purchasing managers’ index (PMI)figures, due at 0830 GMT. The index is expected to have eased to 58.2 in May from 58.7 in the previous month, but stay above the 50 threshold for growth.

* TESCO - Britain’s biggest retailer, posted the worst quarterly drop in underlying sales in its key home market since Chief Executive Phil Clarke took the helm in 2011, raising further questions over his trading strategy.

* OIL COMPANIES - Wage talks between oil companies and the largest union representing land-based oil workers in Norway have broken down and are heading to state-appointed mediation, the Norwegian Oil and Gas Association said on Wednesday.

The negotiations over pay and work conditions affect about 5,000 employees working for Statoil, BP, ConocoPhillips and Shell , among others.

* ROYAL BANK OF SCOTLAND - The part-nationalised bank has followed rival Lloyds Banking Group in placing restrictions on mortgage lending to tackle rising British house prices.

* LLOYDS BANK - The bank, part-owned by the British government, has withdrawn from a $1.5-$2 billion trade finance deal involving oil major Rosneft , in a development highlighting the growing unease among Western banks in funding Russian deals.

* Dutch firefighters on Wednesday extinguished a fire that had raged overnight at a chemical plant near the southern port city of Rotterdam after an explosion at the facility.

* The Queen’s Speech later in the day will mark the formal start of the parliamentary year and set out the government’s agenda for the coming session, outlining proposed policies and legislation.

* British telecoms regulator Ofcom on Wednesday proposed further cuts in mobile termination rates - the charges operators impose to connect calls across networks - in a move that could lead to cheaper bills for consumers.

* How far banks are along the path to rehabilitation will be thrown into sharp focus this week when politicians, central bankers and bank bosses gather in London - Europe’s finance capital and also the site of many of the industry’s ills.

* Prices in British shops last month were 1.4 percent lower than a year earlier, the same rate of decline as in April, continuing their deflationary trend, the British Retail Consortium said on Wednesday.

* Brent crude held near $109 a barrel as investors eyed U.S. oil inventory data and looked to euro zone policies they hope could spur growth and boost the region’s energy demand.

* London copper prices fell to a two-week low on nagging doubts over the health of China’s giant manufacturing sector, while traders also worried about access to finance after a probe at a Chinese port.


> 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 Atul Prakash; editing by Blaise Robinson and Francesco Canepa)

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