The Swiss stock market was up sharply in early trade Friday and reached a new high for the year, of 6,562 points. Thursday's bond purchase plan announcement from the European Central Bank continued to drive the market higher this morning. However, those gains receded in the afternoon, following the disappointing U.S. jobs report.
The U.S. reported an increase of 96,000 jobs in August, which fell short of expectations. The unemployment rate also dropped to 8.1 percent for the month. The unemployment rate had been expected to come in unchanged at 8.3 percent.
The Swiss Market Index held on to a gain of 0.14 percent Friday and finished at 6,537.32. The SMI ended the week with a gain of 2.3 percent. The Swiss Leader Index climbed by 0.84 percent Friday and the Swiss Performance Index increased by 0.28 percent.
Financial stocks turned in another strong performance Friday, continuing to benefit from the ECB bond announcement. Credit Suisse surged by 3.9 percent and UBS added 2.5 percent. Julius Baer also finished higher by 1.9 percent. Swiss Life led the way among the insurers, with a gain of 3.0 percent.
The defensive heavyweights mostly finished in the red Friday. Nestle fell by 1.5 percent and Novartis lost 0.9 percent. Shares of Roche were up marginally, by 0.2 percent.
by RTT Staff Writer
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