Oct 6 (Reuters) - Britain's FTSE 100 index is seen opening 9 points
higher on Friday, according to financial bookmakers.
        
    * UNILEVER: Anglo-Dutch consumer group Unilever has invited private
equity bidders to submit tentative offers for its $8 billion margarine and
spreads business by a deadline of Oct. 19, two sources close to the matter told
Reuters.
    * ROYAL MAIL: Britain's Royal Mail will use all legal options at its
disposal to halt a strike by postal workers this month, it said on Thursday
after the industry union announced the action over a pensions dispute.

    * BANK OF ENGLAND: Financial markets are less at risk of "an unpleasant
surprise" from the Bank of England, now that they expect an interest rate rise
later this year, rather than in mid-2019, BoE policymaker Ian McCafferty said on
Thursday.
    * BP: BP Plc said on Thursday it was shutting-in all oil and natural
gas production from its U.S. Gulf of Mexico platforms ahead of Tropical Storm
Nate.
    * SHELL: Royal Dutch Shell is shutting in production from some of
its subsea fields and suspending some drilling activity at its assets in eastern
Gulf of Mexico ahead of Tropical Storm Nate, it said on Thursday.
    * UK RETAIL: British shops enjoyed their biggest jump in sales in more than
three years in September, a survey of the retail sector showed, suggesting
consumers are finding ways to cope with the squeeze on their incomes.

    * UK JOBS: Growth in the number of workers hired in Britain via recruitment
agencies slowed last month and fell in London for the first time in nearly a
year as Brexit makes it harder for companies to find staff, a survey showed on
Friday.
    * IRISH CONSUMER SENTIMENT: A modest improvement in Irish consumer sentiment
last month thanks to a brighter outlook for household finances was enough to
return the index to its highest level since early last year, a survey showed on
Friday.
    * GOLD: Gold was steady on Friday ahead of key U.S. jobs data later in the
day, with prices curbed as the dollar stood firm near a seven-week high.

    * OIL: Oil markets were cautious on Friday as traders monitored a tropical
storm heading for the Gulf of Mexico and as China remained closed for a
week-long public holiday.
    * The UK blue chip index closed 0.5 percent higher at 7,502.79 points on
Thursday as a sharp fall in sterling boosted the index, with basic resources and
oil and gas stocks contributing most to the upswing.
    * For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on: cpurl://apps.cp./cms/?pageId=livemarkets
    
    * UK CORPORATE DIARY:
   
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 (Reporting by Radhika Rukmangadhan in Bengaluru)
  

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