MetLife board OKs Brighthouse spinoff, sets effective date

June 29 (Reuters) - MetLife Inc on Thursday came a step closer to spinning off its U.S. retail life insurance business after the company's board of directors approved the plan, it said on Thursday.

The board set July 19 as the effective date for the spinoff of Brighthouse Financial Inc, with shares to be distributed on Aug. 4, subject to approval by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the company said. (Reporting by Suzanne Barlyn; Editing by Richard Chang)