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The Swiss Stock Market Fell Again As Richemont Tumbles

The Swiss stock market ended Friday's session with a modest loss, adding to the losses of the previous session. After a weak start, the market recovered ground around midday before sinking to a new intraday low after the weak open on Wall Street.

Investors were concerned about the outlook for U.S. tax reform at the end of the trading week after Senate Republicans released their version of a tax bill. The Senate bill includes some significant differences from the House version, including a delay in the implementation of a cut in the corporate tax rate.

The Swiss Market Index decreased by 0.48 percent Friday and finished at 9,134.16. The SMI ended the trading week with an overall loss of 2 percent, its biggest pullback since mid-August. The Swiss Leader Index dropped 0.46 percent Friday and the Swiss Performance Index lost 0.39 percent.

Richemont sank 3.8 percent. The luxury goods company reported a significant increase in sales and profit for the first half of the year. The pullback was attributed to profit taking. Competitor Swatch Group weakened by 1.1 percent.

Aryzta fell 2.2 percent. The company revealed that Juergen Steinemann, who is being investigated for insider trading, will not stand for election to the company's board.

ABB weakened by 2.2 percent. The stock fell on Thursday after its German competitor's disappointing report. Geberit declined 1.4 percent, LafargeHolcim dropped 1.3 percent and Adecco lost 1.0 percent. Hearing aid manufacturer Sonova also weakened by 0.9 percent ahead of its half-year report on Monday.

The index heavyweights all finished with small losses Friday. Roche decreased by 0.5 percent, while Nestlé and Novartis both lost 0.2 percent.

UBS climbed 0.9 percent after Merrill Lynch rated the bank a "Buy." Julius Baer gained 0.3 percent and Credit Suisse added 0.1 percent.

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