Oct. 11 (Bloomberg) -- Swiss stocks declined, snapping four days of gains for the benchmark Swiss Market Index, as investors awaited a vote in Slovakia on the euro-area bailout fund.
Financial shares led losses as Credit Suisse Group AG and UBS AG declined. Cie. Financiere Richemont SA retreated 1.9 percent. Actelion Ltd., Switzerland’s largest biotechnology company, jumped 1.7 percent. Givaudan SA, the maker of the fragrances for Marc Jacobs’s Lola and Paco Rabanne’s 1 Million, rose 1.1 percent after reiterating its mid-term outlook.
The Swiss Market Index, a measure of the biggest and most actively traded companies, lost 0.5 percent to 5,689.59 at 10:45 a.m. in Zurich. The gauge has tumbled 12 percent this year as disappointing European and U.S. economic reports fueled concern that the global recovery is faltering. The broader Swiss Performance Index also slipped 0.5 today.
Slovakia’s Prime Minister Iveta Radicova tied today’s vote to approve the euro area’s new bailout fund with a no-confidence vote in the government. Every other country in the 17-nation euro area has ratified the European Financial Stability Facility, following Malta’s approval of the fund yesterday. Radicova said she will repeat the vote if lawmakers reject it today.
Luxembourg’s Jean-Claude Juncker, who chairs the group of euro-area finance ministers, said writedowns on Greek bonds may exceed 60 percent. Juncker made the comments in an interview on Austrian television.
Bank Capital Levels
European governments have discussed setting a deadline for banks to boost their capital, the German newspaper Die Welt said, citing an unidentified person involved in the talks.
Under the plan, governments would force banks to accept public funds to increase their capital once the deadline had passed, the newspaper said. European Union countries would have to act jointly for the plan to work, the newspaper reported.
Credit Suisse and UBS, Switzerland’s largest lenders, fell 1.5 percent to 24.30 Swiss francs and 0.9 percent to 10.78 francs, respectively. Julius Baer Group Ltd., the country’s fifth-biggest wealth manager, dropped 1.2 percent to 31.90 francs.
Richemont, the maker of Jaeger-LeCoultre watches, lost 1.9 percent to 45.52 francs.
Actelion jumped 1.7 percent to 31.42 francs after Jefferies Group Inc. raised the stock to “buy” from “hold.”
Givaudan gained 1.1 percent to 753.50 francs. The company said nine-month sales rose to 2.97 billion francs ($3.3 billion), a 4.7 percent gain in local currencies. Givaudan repeated its mid-term forecast to expand at about double the pace of the 2 percent to 3 percent growth predicted for the wider market.
--Editor: Will Hadfield
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