Markets

Swiss Market Ends Higher Again

(RTTNews) - The Switzerland stock market ended higher for a second successive day, as optimism about resumption of U.S.-China trade talks and the recent batch of Swiss economic data rendered the mood positive and pushed up stock prices on Friday.

The benchmark SMI ended up 57.17 points, or 0.58%, at 9,895.65, after moving between 9,838.48 and 9,941.33.

On Thursday, the index ended up 80.29 points, or 0.82%, at 9,838.48.

In the SMI Index, Sika was the top gainer, rising nearly 2.5%. Credit Suisse and Givaudan both ended nearly 1.5% up. SGS and ABB gained 1.3% and 1.1%, respectively.

Novartis ended 1.3% up after the company announced positive study results for its prospective multiple sclerosis drug Ofatumumab. The company expects the drug to pose a stiff challenge to Roche's medicine Ocrevus in a highly competitive market.

Nestle, Alcon, Zurich Insurance Group, Swisscom, Geberit, UBS Group and LafargeHolcim ended with modest gains.

Swiss Re declined nearly 3%, with investors fearing the likely impact on the financials of the company in the event of hurricane Dorain causing a severe damage across Bahamas and Florida.

In the midcap space, VAT Group, Barry Callebaut, Logitech International, Temenos Group and Kuehne & Nagel gained 2 to 2.7%.

Julius Baer, OC Oerlikon Group, Straumann Holding, Sonova, Partners Group, Clariant and Georg Fischer also ended notably higher.

Switzerland's economy is set to perform moderately during the next few months, the KOF Swiss Economic Institute said on Friday.

On the economic front, The KOF Economic Barometer, a leading indicator for the trends in the alpine economy, remained unchanged at 97 in August.

The initial reading for July was 97.1 that was revised to 97. Economists had forecast a score of 95.6.

The latest stability conceals slight shifts among the components underlying the barometer, the think tank said.

Indicators of foreign demand, consumer prospects and manufacturing are giving somewhat more favorable signals, while the remaining indicators tend to signal stagnation or slight deterioration in economic sentiment, the KOF added.

Most of the markets across Europe ended with impressive gains today. Among the major indices, France's CAC 40 gained 0.56%, Germany's DAX advanced 0.85% and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 ended up 0.32%, while the pan European Stoxx 600 ended up 0.73%.

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