January 9, 2018 / 5:38 AM / 5 months ago

Swiss stocks - Factors to watch on Jan 9

ZURICH, Jan 9 (Reuters) - The Swiss blue-chip SMI was seen opening 0.1 percent firmer at 9.549 points on Tuesday, according to premarket indications by bank Julius Baer .

Here are some of the main factors that may affect Swiss stocks on Tuesday.

SWISS NATIONAL BANK

The Swiss National Bank expects an annual profit of 54 billion Swiss francs ($55.25 billion) for 2017, the central bank said on Tuesday, the biggest profit in its 110-year history.

SIKA

The construction chemicals group said it expected record 2017 net profit after ‍sales grew 8.9 percent in local currencies to 6.25 billion Swiss francs; it forecast sales would increase more than 10 percent in 2018

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NESTLE

The Financial Times, citing unidentified sources, reported that Rhone Capital, the U.S.-based private equity group, has placed a binding offer to acquire Nestle's U.S. confectionary business, joining a $2.5 billion race that includes Italy's Ferrero and The Hershey Company.

COMPANY STATEMENTS

* Novartis said it is starting a head-to-head superiority trial of its drug Cosentyx versus AbbVie's Humira in psoriatic arthritis and a head-to-head superiority trial versus a proposed Humira biosimilar in ankylosing spondylitis.

* SGS is buying U.S.-based food safety testing group Vanguard Sciences, which had 2017 sales of $11 million

* Crealogix Holding AG acquires Barcelona-based Innofis

* DKSH Holding AG started a collaboration with Cheplapharm to renew sales growth of its branded products across Asia

* Burckhardt Compression Holding AG expects consolidated sales for fiscal year 2017 to reach the prior-year level and the EBIT margin to range between 6 and 9 percent; presents mid-range plan – systems division will maintain its market leadership – growth will come from the services division

* Alpiq Holding AG and the Swiss hotel association establish partnership

* Swiss Prime Site AG launches 300 million Swiss franc convertible bonds due 2025

ECONOMY

* The Swiss unemployment rate rose to a non-seasonally adjusted 3.3 percent in December from 3.1 percent in the previous month. When adjusted for seasonal factors, the unemployment rate stood at 3.0 percent after a revised 3.1 percent in the previous month.

* The Swiss National Bank is due to release data on its foreign currency reserves at 0800 GMT.

* Swiss retail sales data for November is expected to be published by the Federal Statistics Office at 0815 GMT.

Reporting by Zurich newsroom

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