Bloomberg News

Swiss Stocks Fall for Fifth Day; Clariant, Logitech Lead Drop

June 08, 2011

June 8 (Bloomberg) -- Swiss stocks declined for a fifth day, the longest losing streak in 2 1/2 months, after Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke gave no sign he is planning new stimulus efforts to bolster the weakening U.S. economy.

Logitech International SA, the world’s biggest maker of computer mice, slumped 3.4 percent and Clariant AG, the maker of chemicals and paints, slipped 3.6 percent as gauges of technology and chemical companies in the Stoxx Europe 600 Index fell more than 1 percent. UBS AG, Switzerland’s biggest bank, dropped 2.1 percent to the lowest since November.

The Swiss Market Index of the biggest and most actively traded companies retreated 1.2 percent to 6,256.86 at the 5:30 p.m. close in Zurich. The measure has fallen 6.9 percent from this year’s high on Feb. 18 as U.S. manufacturing and jobs reports fueled concern that the recovery in the world’s largest economy is faltering and as speculation grew that Greece will default on its debt. The broader Swiss Performance Index also lost 1.2 percent today.

“Equities are sliding after faltering leading indicators and general concerns over the near-term macro picture,” said Christoph Riniker, head of strategy research at Julius Baer Group Ltd. in Zurich.

Bernanke said yesterday in Atlanta that monetary stimulus is still needed to boost a “frustratingly slow” recovery. Even so, he said growth is likely to pick up as fuel prices moderate and disruptions of parts supplies ease as factories in Japan recover from an earthquake and tsunami. He gave no indication of a new round of asset purchases known as quantitative easing.

German Industrial Production

A report today showed Germany’s industrial production unexpectedly declined for the first time in four months in April, led by a drop in construction output. Production fell 0.6 percent from March, when it rose a revised 1.2 percent, the Economy Ministry in Berlin said.

Logitech dropped 3.4 percent to 10.08 Swiss francs as UBS reduced its price estimate on the shares to 11.50 francs from 13.50 francs. Clariant slipped 3.6 percent to 17.76 francs.

UBS fell 2.1 percent to 15.32 francs as the Financial Times reported that the bank plans to raise pay to help recruit and retain senior employees following a series of departures from its investment banking unit.

Julius Baer Group Ltd., the 121-year-old wealth manager, fell 2.3 percent to 34.83 francs and Credit Suisse Group AG, Switzerland’s second-biggest lender, dropped 1.5 percent to 34.65 francs.

--Editors: Andrew Rummer, Jason Carey

To contact the reporter on this story: Corinne Gretler in Zurich at cgretler1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew Rummer at arummer@bloomberg.net


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