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The Swiss Stock Market Finished Higher Thanks To Defensive Stocks

4/19/2012 12:15 PM ET

The Swiss stock market closed to the upside Thursday, following a volatile day of trading. The defensive alignment of the market contributed to its positive finish.

The rest of the major European market finished to the downside. A rumor that one of the major rating agencies would downgrade France's debt rating weighed on markets. Weaker than expected economic reports from the U.S. also put pressure on the markets in the afternoon.

The Swiss Market Index climbed by 0.49 percent Thursday and finished at 6,203.78. The Swiss Leader Index rose 0.24 percent and the Swiss Performance Index closed higher by 0.45 percent.

All of the defensive heavyweights finished to the upside Thursday. Nestle gained 1.0 percent ahead of its quarterly report on Friday. Roche increased by 0.9 percent and Novartis climbed by 0.5 percent.

Swiss Re was one of the top gainers Thursday, with an increase of 2.4 percent. The stock benefitted from positive analysts' comments. Actelion rose by 2.3 percent, following the company's quarterly report.

by RTT Staff Writer

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