The Swiss stock market held on to modest gains at the end of Thursday's trading session. The market got off to a weak start, but managed to recover, before settling into a range. Strong U.S. economic data released in the afternoon provided a boost to the market in late trading.
Business activity in the Chicago area saw a notable improvement in the month of January, while personal income in the U.S. showed a substantial increase in the month of December. However, first-time claims for U.S. unemployment benefits rebounded by more than anticipated for the week. Investors will now turn their attention to the U.S. jobs report for January, which will be released on Friday.
The Swiss Market Index increased by 0.04 percent Thursday and finished at 7,390.86. The Swiss Leader Index dropped by 0.08 percent and the Swiss Performance Index closed unchanged.
The market received some support from the solid rebound in shares of index heavyweight Roche. The stock climbed by 1.4 percent Thursday, following yesterday's profit taking. Novartis dipped by 0.2 percent and Nestle finished unchanged.
Luxury goods company Swatch increased by 1.5 percent Thursday, but Richemont lost 0.5 percent. Other notable gainers were Sika, which climbed by 1.5 percent and Kuehne + Nagel, which added 1.3 percent.
by RTT Staff Writer
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