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Swiss Stocks Advance as Transocean Shares Climb

Swiss stocks advanced, rebounding from yesterday’s loss, as Swatch Group AG and Transocean Ltd. rose and a report showed euro-area industrial production exceeded economists’ estimates.

Swatch and Transocean both climbed at least 1.5 percent, posting the biggest gains on the country’s equity benchmark.

The Swiss Market Index jumped 0.5 percent to 8,187.75 at the close in Zurich. The gauge has rallied 20 percent so far in 2013, its best start to a year since 1998. The broader Swiss Performance Index also increased 0.5 percent today.

“Data on production in the euro zone is contributing to gains,” said Arnaud Scarpaci, who helps oversee $260 million as a fund manager at Montaigne Capital in Paris.

A release from the European Union’s statistics office showed that euro-area industrial production rose 1 percent in March, higher than the 0.5 percent median estimate of economists in a Bloomberg survey. The measure, which is compiled by Eurostat, gained a revised 0.3 percent in February.

The ZEW Center for European Economic Research in Mannheim, Germany said that its index of investor and analyst expectations increased to 36.4 from 36.3 in April. Economists had forecast a reading of 40, according to the median of 38 estimates in a Bloomberg News survey. The measure aims to predict economic developments six months in advance.

Finance chiefs from the 27 members of the European Union met in Brussels to discuss plans to create a banking union. Ministers from the 17 countries using the single currency debated how to regulate lenders yesterday.

The number of shares trading hands on the SMI was 19 percent lower than the average of the past 30 days, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Transocean, the largest offshore oil-rig contractor, gained 1.8 percent to 52.50 Swiss francs. Swatch, the biggest maker of Swiss timepieces, climbed 1.5 percent to 563.50 francs.

Swiss Re, the world’s second-biggest reinsurer, added 1.5 percent to 73.60 francs.

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