February 25, 2019 / 5:42 AM / 3 months ago

Swiss stocks - Factors to watch on Feb. 25

ZURICH/BERLIN, Feb 25 (Reuters) - The Swiss blue-chip SMI was seen opening 0.3 percent higher at 9,374 points on Monday, according to premarket indications from bank Julius Baer .

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

ROCHE

Roche Holding AG said on Monday it will buy Spark Therapeutics in a $4.3 billion deal, as the Swiss drugmaker builds its haemophilia portfolio and seeks to keep pace in gene therapy.

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NOVARTIS

The Swiss drugmaker said on Monday it is exercising its option to license rights to an investigational, RNA-targeting cardiovascular drug from Ionis Pharmaceuticals as it targets inherited factors that have defied other treatments.

Separately, an experimental gene therapy for spinal muscular atrophy developed by Novartis would be worth up to $900,000, according to an independent U.S. nonprofit organization that reviews the value of drugs and medical treatments.

UBS

The Swiss bank nominated Jeanette Wong and William C. Dudley to its board of directors at the upcoming AGM, after Ann F. Godbehere and Michel Demare announced they would be stepping down.

Several politicians are considering adjust regulation to allow UBS to make the French fine tax deductible, Sonntagsblick said, adding that SVP's Thomas Matter was one of the initiative's driving forces.

Sonntagszeitung said that Switzerland's federal tax authority wants to help the French judiciary by providing data of 45,000 UBS customers, but first the federal court had to decide whether that is legally possible.

STADLER RAIL

IPO plans of Stadler Rail are more advanced than thought but a decision has not been taken yet, newsletter Cash said, citing people familiar with the matter. The listing would have to be done by May.

COMPANY STATEMENTS

* Admicasa Holding announced that its CFO decided to leave at the end of May.

* Lonza said it is realigning its structure and has created a new executive committee position.

* Santhera said a long-term study of Idebenone showed efficacy in slowing respiratory function loss in patients with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy

* Ascom Holding said its Digistat Smart Central Plus Clinical Software Solution received Class IIb Certification in the European Union.

ECONOMY

* Q4 non-farm payrolls data due at 0730 GMT

* Standard & Poor's said it had affirmed Switzerland's rating at Aaa/A-1+. (Reporting by Zurich Newsroom and Berlin Speed Desk)

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