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Swiss Market Ends Higher Again

The Switzerland stock market ended modestly higher on Thursday, riding on gains in select blue chips, amid easing concerns about trade disputes after the U.S. and China signed the much awaited phase one trade deal on Wednesday.

After a flat start and a subsequent fall, the market recovered only to falter again in mid morning trades. However, amid selective buying in cautious trade, it moved higher past mid afternoon to eventually end with modest gains.

The benchmark SMI ended up 22.78 points, or 0.21%, at 10,693.52, the day's high, extending gains to a third successive session. Earlier in the day, the index touched a low of 10,639.63.

On Wednesday, the SMI ended up 14.92 points, or 0.14%, at 10,670.74.

Lonza Group shares gained about 2.25%. Nestle advanced 1.05%, while Givaudan and Swisscom ended nearly 1% up. Zurich Insurance Group, Credit Suisse, Swatch Group and UBS gained 0.3 to 0.7%.

Geberit shares declined nearly 5% despite the company reporting a 1.9% increase in organic sales during its fourth quarter, helped by strong demand in eastern Europe and Italy. In terms of results, the management expects an operating cashflow margin of around 29% in 2019, the company said in a filing.

Adecco ended lower by about 2.2% and Richemont declined 1.28%, while Alcon ended down 0.74%.

In the midcap section, Swiss Prime Site, Temenos Group and Flughafen Zurich ended lower by 1.2 to 1.5%, while AMS declined more than 2% and VAT Group shares ended nearly 1% down.

Among the other major markets in Europe, France ended marginally up and Germany edged down slightly, while the U.K. closed modestly lower. The pan European Stoxx 600 advanced 0.22%.

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