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UK Stocks-Factors to watch on April 8
Published at 08/04/2021 at 06:59

April 8 (Reuters) - Britain's FTSE 100 index is seen opening 23 points higher at 6,909 points on Thursday, according to financial bookmakers.

* ASTRAZENECA: European Union health ministers failed on Wednesday to agree a common guidance on the use of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine, despite calls for coordination across member states to combat public hesitancy over taking the shot.

* ASTRAZENECA: Mexican and Brazilian health regulators said on Wednesday they would not limit the use of AstraZeneca's

COVID-19 shot after Britain's vaccine advisory committee recommended not using it for people under 30, citing rare blood clot risks.

* ASTRAZENECA: Spain will only give AstraZeneca's coronavirus vaccine to people over 60 years old after European and British regulators found a potential link between the shot and rare brain blood clots.

*OIL: Oil prices fell after official figures showed a big increase in U.S. gasoline stocks, causing concerns about demand for crude weakening in the world's biggest consumer of the resource at a time when supplies around the world are rising.

* HIRING: British companies sharply stepped up hiring and offered higher pay to new staff last month as they grew more confident about economic recovery and prepared for COVID-19 restrictions to ease, a recruiters body said on Thursday.

* NATIONAL GRID: Britain should have enough electricity to meet demand over the summer months, the country's National Grid Electricity System Operator (ESO) said on Thursday, even though peak demand could be slightly higher than last year.

* GOLD: Gold prices slipped as investors turned to riskier assets after the U.S. Federal Reserve's latest meeting minutes indicated continued policy support and cemented hopes of a quick economic turnaround.

* The UK blue-chip index ended higher on Wednesday, led by gains in commodity stocks and a weaker pound lifted exporters.

* UK CORPORATE DIARY:

Dunelm Trading Statement

Ferrexpo Trading Statement

OSB Group FY Results

Hyve Group H1 Trading

Statement

Johnson Matthey FY Trading

Statement

ASOS HY Results

* For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on:

TODAY'S UK PAPERS

> Financial Times

> Other business headlines

(Reporting by Jasmine I S in Bengaluru)

((jasmine.is.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net;))