Swiss Markets Halt Losing Streak On Monday

The Swiss stock market on Monday wrote a finish to the two-day slide in which it had slumped more than 230 points or 2.1 percent.

The SMI opened modestly higher and pent most of the session bouncing back and forth across the unchanged line before a late rally pushed the index solidly into the green by closing.

The gains were in line with the rest of Europe as Germany, France and the UK all posed solid gains.

The rally was fueled by European Central bank President Christine Lagarde, who reaffirmed on Monday that the ECB will hike interest rates by 25 basis points twice this summer to fight inflation. Investors had worried that sharper rate hikes might be on the docket, sparking recession concerns.

On Monday, the SMI picked up 34.60 points or 0.33 percent to finish at the daily high of 10,485.91 after moving as low as 10,392.10.

Among the actives, Geberit plunged 2.47 percent, while Sika slumped 2.19 percent, Swisscom climbed 1.66 percent, Credit Suisse and Swiss Re both jumped 1.57 percent, Zurich Insurance improved 1.40 percent, Lonza Group sank 1.37 percent, EBS collected 1.19 percent, Navartis gained 0.84 percent, Swiss Life lost 0.75 percent, The Swatch Group was up 0.54 percent and Roche Holdings perked 0.38 percent.

In corporate news, the European Commission said on Monday that it has opened an antitrust investigation into Swiss pharmaceutical company Vifor Pharma AG to assess whether it restricted competition by illegally disparaging its closest - and potentially only - competitor in Europe on the market for intravenous iron treatment, Pharmacosmos.

The EU claims that Vifor Pharma's conduct appears to be aimed at hindering competition against its blockbuster high-dose intravenous iron treatment medicine, Ferinject.

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