UPDATE 1-UK Stocks-Factors to watch on Dec 21

Last Updated: Thu, Dec 21, 2017 13:20 hrs

(Adds company news and futures) Dec 21 (Reuters) - Britain's FTSE 100 index is seen opening up 4 points on Thursday, according to financial bookmakers, with futures up 0.18 percent ahead of the cash market open. * BALFOUR BEATTY: Britain's Balfour Beatty said on Thursday it had agreed to sell a 12.5 percent stake in Connect Plus, the operator of the M25 motorway, to fund management company Dalmore Capital Limited for 103 million pounds ($137.6 million). * BREXIT-FUNDS: Britain's financial regulator said on Wednesday that asset managers and mutual funds from the European Union would be allowed to continue operating in the UK after Brexit for a period of time even if there is no trade deal with the bloc. * OIL: Oil prices were stable on Thursday after posting strong gains late in the previous session on the back of a drop in U.S. crude inventories. * GOLD: Gold prices edged up to touch a two-week high on Thursday amid firm underlying support and expectations of year-end purchases, with the dollar and stocks little changed in Asian trade. * EX-DIVS: Burberry , United Utilities will trade without entitlement to their latest dividend pay-out on Thursday, trimming 0.53 point off the FTSE 100 according to Reuters calculations. * The UK blue chip index closed 0.3 percent lower on Wednesday, along with other European bourses before a final vote in the U.S. House of Representatives that would allow Donald Trump to sign massive tax cuts into law. * For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on: cpurl://apps.cp./cms/?pageId=livemarkets TODAY'S UK PAPERS > Financial Times > Other business headlines Multimedia versions of Reuters Top News are now available for: * 3000 Xtra : visit http://topnews.session.rservices.com * For Top News : http://topnews.reuters.com (Reporting by Justin George Varghese; Editing by Amrutha Gayathri)

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