ZURICH/BERLIN, May 15 (Reuters) - The Swiss blue-chip SMI was seen opening 0.9% higher at 9,529 points on Friday, according to premarket indications by bank Julius Baer .
Here are some of the main factors that may affect Swiss stocks:
The Swiss luxury watch, bags and jewelry maker said profit for the year ending in March fell by two-thirds, as the company said predicted up to 36 months of grave consequences as COVID-19 has delivered a knock-out punch to the global economy.
It will take two years before a vaccine for the new coronavirus is ready, Novartis Chief Executive Vas Narasimhan told German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ) in an interview.
The Swiss drugmaker said on Friday it will start selling a new digital diagnostics product that may simplify and accelerate screening of arterial blood gas in patients with breathing problems during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The online travel industry company posted a 6.7 million euro ($7.24 million) Q1 loss, from a 6.3 million profit a year earlier, as it said " circumstances surrounding COVID-19 are unprecedented and the financial impact to our company and the broader travel industry has been and will be significant for the next months."
Global coronavirus deaths passed 300,000 as infections approached 4.5 million, according to a Reuters tally, with the United States responsible for more than a quarter of all fatalities.
Native announced that FBNK Finance had acquired a 21,81% ownership interest in the company.
ZURICH INSURANCE - JP Morgan cuts target price to chf 370 from chf 410
STRAUMANN - JP Morgan cuts to "underweight" from "neutral"; cuts target price to chf 549 from chf 643
SUNRISE COMMUNICATIONS - Credit Suisse cuts target price to chf 90 from chf 95
LAFARGEHOLCIM - 2.00 chf/shr dividend
* No major Swiss economic data scheduled
$1 = 0.9255 euros Reporting by Zurich newsroom and Berlin Speed Desk