(Adds futures, company news items)
* CLOSE BROTHERS: British lender Close Brothers Group CBRO.L reported a 13 percent rise in full-year adjusted operating profit, driven by strength in its banking, asset management and market making divisions. COBHAM: British defence supplier Cobham COB.L on Tuesday named Paul Kahn, the former Airbus UK boss, as president of its communications and connectivity sector. THOMAS COOK: Tour operator Thomas Cook TCG.L said on Tuesday it had entered into a strategic partnership with Switzerland's LMEY Investments to grow its own-brand hotel portfolio, as it confirmed its full-year outlook. UNITED UTILITIES: United Utilities Group Plc UU.L said it expects underlying operating profit and revenue for the first half of the year to be higher, helped by regulatory changes. ANTOFAGASTA: Tighter copper supply and an increase in refining capacity in top-consumer China should result in lower treatment and refining charges (TC/RCs) by smelters, the chief executive of Chilean miner Antofagasta Plc ANTO.L told Reuters. EASYJET: Insolvent German airline Air Berlin AB1.DE hopes to conclude talks with Lufthansa LHAG.DE and easyJet EZJ.L on a carve-up of its assets by the middle of next month as it races to secure jobs and keep flying. PREMIER OIL: CATS Management Limited (CML), a UK gas infrastructure company owned by Antin Infrastructure Partners, will invest 135 million pounds ($181.99 million) to build the infrastructure for Premier Oil's PMO.L Tolmount gas field in the North Sea. TESCO: Three former senior executives of Tesco TSCO.L accused of fraud and false accounting at Britain's biggest retailer appeared on Monday in a London court. Opening arguments are expected from Wednesday. HSBC: A former top HSBC Holdings Plc HSBA.L executive threw his Scottish client "under the bus" by using his knowledge of its large planned currency transaction to do his own trading first, a U.S. prosecutor said on Monday at the start of a closely-watched trial. BRITISH BANKS: British banks have underestimated the risks from a surge in consumer borrowing and need to hold an extra 10 billion pounds of capital to guard against future dangers, the Bank of England said on Monday. BREXIT: British and EU negotiators talked up hopes for progress on Brexit as a new round of talks began in Brussels on Monday, days after Prime Minister Theresa May tried to revive the process and improve the mood. BREXIT: Britain will honour its financial commitments made during its membership of the European Union after it leaves the EU, but that deal must be linked to an agreement on future economic ties, Britain's chief Brexit negotiator said. U.S./NORTH KOREA: North Korea's foreign minister said on Monday President Donald Trump had declared war on North Korea and that Pyongyang reserved the right to take countermeasures, including shooting down U.S. bombers even if they are not in its air space. GOLD: Gold held steady on Tuesday after rising over one percent in the previous session, supported by safe-haven demand amid rising tensions surrounding North Korea and as the dollar eased from near three-week highs. OIL: Oil prices extended gains on Tuesday, with Brent crude hitting a 26-month high, supported by Turkey's threat to cut crude flows from Iraq's Kurdistan region to the outside world. The blue chip FTSE 100 index fell 0.1 percent to 7,301.29 points on Monday, pulled away from a one-week high as losses among heavyweight financials and commodities-linked sectors weighed. The index underperformed a slightly positive European market following the result of the German general election. For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on: cpurl://apps.cp./cms/?pageId=livemarkets
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