UK Stocks-Factors to watch on May 4

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UK Stocks-Factors to watch on May 4
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May 4 (Reuters) - Britain's FTSE 100 .FTSE index is seen opening open 29 points higher on Friday, according to financial bookmakers.

* HSBC: HSBC Holdings PLC HSBA.L posted on Friday an unexpected 4 percent drop in first-quarter pre-tax profit due to a surge in investments, missing estimates, and announced plans to initiate a new share buyback of up to $2 billion. BT: BT Group Plc BT.L is set to reveal plans to cut thousands more jobs as Britain's biggest telecommunications company battles to win back investors still spooked by an accounting scandal in Italy last year, FT reported.

* BP: BP Plc BP.L is weighing an acquisition of some of BHP Billiton's BHP.AX , BLT.L energy assets as the British oil major seeks more U.S. shale, Bloomberg reported.

* GOLD: Gold prices gained on Thursday, one day after the U.S. central bank reassured investors that increases to interest rates would be gradual and as the U.S. dollar softened, with geopolitical uncertainties also providing support. The UK blue chip index closed down 0.54 percent at 7,502.69 points on Thursday, as a tumble in Smith & Nephew Plc's SN.L shares and weakness across financials and health stocks dragged the FTSE 100 off a three-month high. For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on: cpurl://apps.cp./cms/?pageId=livemarkets


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