UK Stocks-Factors to watch on Dec. 17



Dec 17 (Reuters) - Britain's FTSE 100 .FTSE index is seen opening lower on Friday, with futures FFIc1 down 0.27%.

* HSBC: Britain's financial regulator said that it had fined HSBC HSBA.L 63.95 million pounds ($85.16 million) for failings in its anti-money laundering processes.

* JOHNSON MATTHEY: Chemicals maker Johnson Matthey JMAT.L will sell its health business to investment firm Altaris Capital Partners for an enterprise value of about 325 million pounds, about eight months after it began a review of the division.

* MORSES CLUB: British subprime lender Morses Club MCLM.L announced it had abandoned a planed overhaul of its business and rebrand as U Money.

* RETAIL SALES: British retail sales rose more strongly than expected last month, helped by Black Friday discounts, early Christmas shopping and an absence of lockdown restrictions that closed many stores a year earlier, official figures showed.

* SHELL: Royal Dutch Shell RDSa.L confirmed a Reuters report that the sale of its controlling interest in a Texas refinery to Mexican state oil company Petroleos Mexicanos has been delayed until next year.

* COMPETITION AND MARKETS AUTHORITY: Britain's competition watchdog said a UK telecom tower deal between Spain's Cellnex CLNX.MC and Hong Kong-based CK Hutchison 0001.HK may raise "significant competition concerns" and risked higher mobile charges.

* GOLD: Gold prices climbed on Friday, poised for their best week since mid-November, as the dollar weakened after the U.S. Federal Reserve decided to withdraw its pandemic-era stimulus in response to fight broadening inflationary risks.

* METALS: Shanghai zinc prices jumped as much as 4.5% to their highest level in more than one month, after miner Nyrstar NYR.BR said it would shutter its plant in France due to high power prices, stoking concerns over tightness in supply.

* OIL: Oil prices dipped, putting the market on track to end the week roughly unchanged, as surging cases of the Omicron coronavirus variant raised fears new curbs may hit fuel demand, while a weaker dollar supported commodity markets broadly.

* Shares in British banks rallied on Thursday, lifting the blue-chip FTSE 100 after the Bank of England stunned investors with an interest rate hike, the world's first major central bank to do so since the pandemic hit the global economy last year.

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

TODAY'S UK PAPERS

> Financial Times

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(Reporting By Amna Karimi in Bengaluru)

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