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Swiss Market Extends Winning Streak

The Swiss stock market ended on a buoyant note on Thursday, extending gains to a third straight session, as a positive trend across the globe amid easing worries about trade war and some upbeat earnings reports lifting sentiment.

The benchmark SMI ended up 179.83 points, or 1.9%, at 9,660.59, the day's high, after easing a bit in early trades.

Roche Holding, Swiss Life Holding, Swiss Re, Givaudan, Zurich Insurance and UBS Group gained 2 to 2.6%.

Novartis advanced nearly 2%. ABB, Swisscom, Lonza Group, Alcon, Richemont, SGS, Geberit, Adecco and Sika also ended with strong gains.

Nestle gained 1.75%. The food and drink company said it has entered into exclusive talks to sell its skin health business to a consortium led by private equity firm EQT Partners in a deal worth 10.2 billion Swiss francs ($10.12 billion).

Alcon ended up 1.6%. The Novartis spin-off said it expects 3 to 5% net sales growth in 2019 if exchange rates remained constant. It expects core profit margin to increase by 17 to 18%.

Sunrise Communications Group gained 3.7% after the company said it expects adjusted EBITDA of 613 to 628 million Swiss francs for the year 2019.

Among other major markets in Europe, Germany ended sharply higher, with the DAX rising 1.74%. France's CAC ended up 1.37% and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 advanced 0.78%, while Switzerland's SMI ended stronger by 1.9%. The pan European Stoxx 600 ended up 1.27%.

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