(Adds futures, news items)
* BURBERRY: Burberry BRBY.L said underlying sales fell 9% in the three months ended December as the COVID-19 pandemic closed shops and meant fewer tourists visiting its European stores. PEARSON: Pearson PSON.L said group sales fell by 10% in 2020, marking an improvement in the final quarter, as growth in online learning demand offset cancelled exams. JD WETHERSPOON: Wetherspoon JDW.L said it raised 93.7 million pounds in its second cash call from investors since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. DIXONS CARPHONE: Dixons Carphone DC.L reported a rise in sales of electricals over Christmas as a strong online performance more than offset the closure of stores during COVID-19 lockdowns. CAIRN ENERGY: Cairn Energy CNE.L said it plans to spend around $85 mln this year with the bulk going to the exploration and appraisal of wells in Britain and Mexico. WH SMITH: WH Smith Plc SMWH.L said it expects a monthly cash burn of about 15 million pounds to 20 million pounds during the current coronavirus-led lockdown in Britain. IWG: IWG IWG.L said it expects further delay to business recovery in 2021 and set aside an additional 160 million pounds provisions related to the pandemic as the latest COVID-19 restrictions impact its markets. CMC (NS: CMC ) MARKETS: Online trading platform CMC Markets CMCX.L warned on Wednesday client activity in the third quarter eased compared with earlier in the financial year, when market volatility was the highest since the 2008 financial crisis due to the COVID-19 pandemic. INFLATION: British inflation gathered speed in December as a temporary easing of COVID-19 travel restrictions helped to push up air and sea fares and a rise in global oil prices made fuel more expensive, official data showed. GOLD: Gold prices rose as the dollar weakened after U.S. Treasury Secretary nominee Janet Yellen underscored the need for a huge stimulus to help the economy recover from the coronavirus jolt. OIL: Oil prices rose on expectations the incoming U.S. administration will go ahead with massive stimulus spending that would boost fuel demand and draw down crude stocks. The UK blue-chip index .FTSE closed 0.1% lower on Tuesday as Ladbrokes (LON: LCL ) owner Entain slumped after U.S. casino operator MGM opted out of a $11 billion takeover plan, while miners also dragged. For more on the factors affecting European stocks, please click on: LIVE/
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