ZURICH, July 4 (Reuters) - Swiss stocks were expected to open higher on Thursday, in line with European markets seen mirroring advances on Wall Street and in Asia, but gains were likely to be capped by the political turmoil in Portugal and Egypt and before Friday’s U.S. jobs data.
The Swiss blue-chip SMI was seen up 0.4 percent, according to premarket indications from bank Julius Baer .
The following are some of the main factors expected to affect Swiss stocks on Thursday:
Barry Callebaut, the world’s biggest maker of chocolate and cocoa products, said strong demand from pastry chefs and restaurants in Europe and Asia helped lift sales volumes by a better-than-expected 8.2 percent in the nine months to May.
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* Schmolz+Bickenbach said its shareholder Gebuka AG rejected the unilateral termination of a shareholders’ agreement by Viktor Vekselberg’s Renova Group, thus contesting the sale by Schmolz+Bickenbach KG of a further 4.83 percent stake to Renova on top of the 20.46 percent acquired last week.
* Forbo Flooring Systems in France said it was concerned by investigations by the French competition authority, initiated on suspicions that leading manufacturers of floor coverings may have engaged in anticompetitive practices. Forbo gave no further details.
* Oerlikon announced the closing of the sale of its natural fibers businesses to the Jinsheng Group of China.