Swiss stocks climbed for a fifth day, their longest winning streak in five weeks.
Actelion Ltd. (ATLN), Switzerland’s largest biotechnology company, jumped 5.1 percent. Givaudan SA (GIVN), the maker of the fragrances for Marc Jacobs’s Lola and Paco Rabanne’s 1 Million, rose 2.6 percent after reiterating its outlook. Zurich Financial Services AG (ZURN), Switzerland’s largest insurer, dropped 1.8 percent.
The Swiss Market Index (SMI), a measure of the biggest and most actively traded companies, added 0.2 percent to 5,732.19 at the 5:30 p.m. close in Zurich. The SMI has tumbled 11 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 gained 0.2 percent today.
“I believe the Slovakian government will be put under much pressure,” said Konstantin Giantiroglou, head of investment advisory at Neue Aargauer Bank in Brugg, Switzerland. “There is some uncertainty on the markets and investors are still cautious.”
Slovakia may approve the euro area’s new bailout fund even as a political storm threatens to topple Prime Minister Iveta Radicova’s governing coalition.
Slovakia’s largest opposition party, which pledged to reject today’s motion, will back the European Financial Stability Facility in a second vote, if lawmakers reject it today, Robert Fico, the group’s leader, told reporters in the capital Bratislava. That would give the measure a majority. Parliament has yet to set a date for a second vote.
“If approved, the can will be kicked a bit further down the road,” Giantiroglou said. “It will be the first step to take a more proactive approach and it clearly buys some time.”
European Central Bank President Jean-Claude Trichet said the sovereign-debt crisis threatened the financial system as officials raced to put together a bank recapitalization plan.
“The crisis has reached a systemic dimension,” Trichet told lawmakers in Brussels today in his capacity as head of the European Systemic Risk Board. “Sovereign stress has moved from the smaller economies to some of the larger countries. The crisis is systemic and must be tackled decisively.”
Luxembourg’s Jean-Claude Juncker, who chairs the group of euro-area finance ministers, said late yesterday on Austrian television that Greek haircuts may exceed the 21 percent euro- area leaders agreed upon in July.
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.
Actelion jumped 5.1 percent to 32.46 Swiss francs after Jefferies Group Inc. raised the stock to “buy” from “hold.”
Givaudan gained 2.6 percent to 764 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.
Lonza Group AG (LONN), the world’s biggest maker of drug ingredients, rose 1.2 percent to 57.40 francs as it announced a partnership with Lipogen for phosphatidylserine.
Zurich Financial Services dropped 1.8 percent to 194.70 francs as a gauge of insurers was among the worst performers in the Stoxx Europe 600 Index. Swiss Reinsurance Co. sank 2.1 percent to 45.56 francs.
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