Bloomberg News

Swiss Stocks Climb as EU Plans to Speed Up Fund Payments

March 02, 2012

Switzerland (UKX) stocks climbed, with a rally in banks paring the benchmark Swiss Market Index’s second weekly decline, after the region’s leaders agreed to speed up payment to the permanent bailout fund.

Credit Suisse (CSGN) Group AG and UBS (UBSN) AG, Switzerland’s largest banks, advanced. Transocean, the world’s biggest operator of offshore drilling rigs, rose 3.7 percent.

The SMI (SMI) added 21.09, or 0.3 percent, to 6,149.37 at the close in Zurich. Of the 20 index members, 11 gained, while nine fell. The broader Swiss Performance Index increased 0.4 percent today. The SMI lost 0.6 percent this week.

“Despite the recent strong performance, we think there is more upside for banks,” said Peter Oppenheimer, a global strategist at Goldman Sachs Group Inc. European Central Bank funding “has improved liquidity and will help sector pre- provision profits, while banks still trade at a reasonable multiple of book value.”

Euro-area leaders agreed to provide capital faster for the planned permanent bailout fund in a concession to international pressure to strengthen the region’s defenses against the debt crisis.

Euro-area governments may pay the first two annual installments into the 500 billion-euro ($662 billion) fund this year and complete the capitalization in 2015, a year before schedule. A decision will come later today.

Transocean (RIGN) advanced 3.7 percent to 49.50 Swiss francs. UBS climbed 0.9 percent to 12.73 francs and Credit Suisse rose 2.6 percent to 24.93 francs.

Actelion Ltd. (ATLN), the maker of Traclear lung treatment, gained 2 percent to 34.77 francs.

Adecco, the world’s largest provider of temporary services, fell 2.3 percent to 48.05 francs. The stock was cut to “neutral” at Citigroup Inc. and Helvea AG.

Sika AG, Europe’s biggest maker of chemicals used in construction, dropped 0.8 percent to 1,989 francs. The company reported a 31 percent drop in 2011 net income to 214.8 million francs.

To contact the reporter on this story: Adam Haigh in London at ahaigh1@bloomberg.net

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


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