ZURICH/BERLIN, Dec 20 (Reuters) - Here are some of the main factors that may affect Swiss stocks on Thursday:
Clariant and Saudi Kayan have signed a memorandum of understanding to evaluate the feasibility of a joint venture with the aim of establishing a manufacturing facility for alkoxylates.
Novartis said it appointed company veteran Susanne Schaffert to lead its oncology unit from Jan. 1 to replace Liz Barrett who is stepping down to return to the United States.
Separately, Novartis is among nearly 30 drugmakers that have taken steps to raise the U.S. prices of their medicines in January, ending a self-declared halt to increases made by a pharma industry under pressure from the Trump administration, according to documents seen by Reuters.
The Basel-based firm is also awaiting a cost effectiveness analysis, in draft form, for their SMA treatments.
Reinsurer Swiss Re has agreed a deal with Japan's MS&AD Insurance Group under which MS&AD will invest a further 315 million pounds ($398 million) into Swiss Re's closed book business ReAssure.
* Airopack Technology Group said its finance chief would leave by the end of January and would be replaced by Emmanuel Walter on an interim basis.
* SGS said it had completed its share buyback, having bought stock for a total 249.9 million Sfr.
* Daetwyler Holding said it had nominated Jens Breu for election as a new director at its AGM on March 12.
* SHL Telemedicine said the Swiss Takeover Board had rejected a request by Himalaya (Cayman Ilands) TMT Fund, among other, for an extension of a deadline to launch a mandatory takeover offer and by Mengke Cai for removal of the suspension of voting rights.
* Leonteq forecast 2018 pretax profit of around 90 million Sfr and kept its 2020 targets unchanged.
* DKSH Holding said it had partnered with AFT Pharmaceuticals to offer the first combination drug in Hong Kong.
* Perrot Duval reported first-half profit of 0.1 million Sfr, compared with a neutral result a year earlier.
* Swiss November trade balance due at 0700 GMT. (Reporting by Zurich newsroom and Berlin Speed Desk)