March 10, 2020 / 5:48 AM / 21 days ago

Swiss stocks - Factors to watch on March 10

ZURICH/BERLIN, March 10 (Reuters) - The Swiss blue-chip SMI was seen opening 2.2% higher at 9,396 points on Tuesday, according to premarket indications by bank Julius Baer .

Here are some of the main factors that may affect Swiss stocks:

CORONAVIRUS

All of Italy under lockdown, reeling financial markets and rioting prisoners made clear on Monday how the global coronavirus epidemic was extending its reach into all aspects of social and economic life.

The coronavirus is closer to causing a pandemic, but outbreaks in countries can still be controlled through a combination of containment and mitigation measures, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Monday.

NOVARTIS

The drugmaker plans to buy back up to 10% of its stock over the next three years with an eye to cancel the shares it repurchases.

GEBERIT

Swiss bathroom and piping supplies maker Geberit boosted 2019 operating cashflow (EBITDA) by 4.2% to a record 904 million Swiss francs ($966 million), it said on Tuesday, in line with market expectations.

The company, which had already reported a 0.1% increase in revenue to 3.08 billion francs, reported net profit rose 3.3% to 647 million versus market expectations for 650.3 million francs. It proposed raising its dividend to 11.30 francs.

FLUGHAFEN ZUERICH

The airport operator gave no financial outlook for 2020, saying the coronavirus outbreak would hit earnings to an extent that it could not estimate at the moment

COMPANY STATEMENTS

* Huber+Suhner AG: FY EBIT down at CHF 80.5 million (previous year: CHF 82.5 million); net income up at CHF 62.8 million (PY CHF 61.4 million); order intake down 12.5% at CHF 800.9 million; to propose ordinary dividend of CHF 1.60 per share (1.50 per share)

* VP Bank AG: FY income CHF 73.5 million, up 34.4%

* Aryzta AG: H1 underlying net profit of 34.4 mln eur; H1 IFRS loss for the period 899.2 mln euro

* Schweiter Technologies Reports FY Revenue 1.18 Bln CHF Vs 1.047 Bln CHF Year Ago.

* Sensirion Holding AG: we anticipate sales growth of 4-10% to CHF 178-188 million for full-year 2020, with a consistently strong gross margin of 52-54%

* HIAG Immobilien Holding AG - executive board now consists of only three members, CEO, CFO and general counsel

* Georg Fischer AG: to enter strategic partnership with innovative British startup company

FLUGHAFEN ZUERICH AG: HSBC RAISES TO BUY FROM HOLD

SIEGFRIED HOLDING AG: BAADER HELVEA CUTS TARGET PRICE TO CHF 445 FROM CHF 492

ECONOMY

No major economic data scheduled. (Reporting by Zurich newsroom and Berlin Speed Desk)

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