March 1 (Reuters) - Britain's FTSE 100 .FTSE index is seen opening up 23.1 points on Wednesday, according to financial bookmakers.
* The UK blue chip index closed 0.1 percent higher at 7263.44 on Tuesday, as gains by GKN Plc GKN.L and Pearson Plc PSON.L outweighed losses from basic resources stocks. UNILEVER: Unilever ULVR.L UNc.AS is proposing changes to how it pays executives and directors in order to make them think more like owners of the business, less than two weeks after seeing off a $143 billion takeover pursuit by U.S. rival Kraft Heinz KHC.O . VODAFONE: Sky Network Television SKT.NZ will not yet cancel its agreement to buy Vodafone 's New Zealand unit VOD.L after the country's competition regulator rejected the proposal, the firms said. 21ST CENTURY FOX/SKY: Rupert Murdoch's Twenty-First Century Fox Inc FOXA.O could formally notify the European Commission of its 11.7 billion pound ($14.47 billion) takeover offer for Sky as soon as Thursday, after which the UK culture secretary will decide whether to launch a probe into the extent of Murdoch's control of UK media, the Guardian reported on Tuesday. FORD: U.S. carmaker Ford Motor (NYSE: F ) Co F.N plans to cut 1,160 jobs at its at its engine plant in Bridgend by 2021, ITV News reported on Tuesday. UK PRICES: Prices in British shops showed the smallest annual decline in over three years last month, adding to signs of growing inflation pressures after last year's post-referendum fall in the pound, data showed on Wednesday. UK INDUSTRY: Prime Minister Theresa May's flagship industrial strategy lacks "clear actions and milestones", the head of the Confederation of British Industry will say on Wednesday, challenging ministers to set out what exactly they plan to do, the Financial Times reported on Tuesday. (http://on.ft.com/2mIXKgz)
* SCOTLAND: The "sheer intransigence" of the British government over Brexit could lead to a second Scottish independence referendum, the head of the devolved Scottish government said on Tuesday. GLOBAL MARKETS: U.S. stock futures pared gains on Wednesday on disappointment that President Donald Trump did not offer further details on his plans for infrastructure spending and tax reforms, but the dollar firmed on growing expectations of a rate hike this month. OIL: Crude oil prices rose on Wednesday as the dollar trimmed gains and a speech by U.S. President Donald Trump offered little on plans by his administration to boost U.S. oil production. FEDERAL RESERVE: A handful of Federal Reserve policymakers on Tuesday jolted markets into higher expectations for a March U.S. interest rate increase, with comments that suggested rate-setters are worried about waiting too long in the face of pending economic stimulus from Washington. For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on: cpurl://apps.cp./cms/?pageId=livemarkets
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