(Adds company news items and futures)
* A.G.BARR: British soft drinks maker A.G.Barr BAG.L posted lower first-half profit on Tuesday as sales dipped due to higher pricing, along with brand challenges in its Rockstar energy and Rubicon juice drinks. CLOSE BROTHERS: Merchant bank Close Brothers Group Plc CBRO.L on Tuesday posted lower annual profit and said Chief Executive Officer Preben Prebensen will leave the company, as it faces a downturn in its market-maker business Winterflood. CARD FACTORY: Card Factory CARDC.L reported a lower first-half pretax profit on Tuesday, hurt by higher inventory costs, as it built a stockpile of greeting cards and gifts ahead of Brexit and expected seasonal purchases. THOMAS COOK: After the collapse of Thomas Cook left hundreds of thousands of passengers reliant on the British state to repatriate them, Prime Minister Boris Johnson questioned whether bosses should have paid themselves so much ahead of its demise. GOLD: Gold prices were steady on Tuesday, having risen to a more than two-week peak in the previous session on global slowdown fears and tensions in the Middle East, while an improved Sino-U.S. trade tone weighed on the yellow metal. OIL: Oil prices eased on Tuesday as weak manufacturing data from Europe and Japan focused market attention on the gloomy outlook for demand and away from uncertainty around supply disruptions in Saudi Arabia. The UK blue chip index fell 0.3% on Monday as weak German economic data weighed on banking shares, offsetting a surge in travel operators and airlines after the collapse of the world's oldest travel firm Thomas Cook. For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on: LIVE/
TODAY'S UK PAPERS
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