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Stock market soars to new heights

9,000 points and no ceiling in sight Keystone Archive

The Swiss blue chip index, SMI, reached an all-time high at the end of trading on Friday, breaking through the 9,000-point barrier.

This content was published on January 12, 2007 - 20:18

The SMI finished the day at 9,032 which was 0.5 per cent higher than Thursday's close. The index has been rising steadily for several months as Swiss companies reported record results.

The index comprises several heavyweights such as food giant, Nestle, pharmaceuticals multinational, Novartis, as well as Switzerland's largest bank, UBS.

Strong demand for shares in these companies has lifted the SMI 30 per cent over the past seven months.

One dealer told the Reuters news agency: "If we stay above this [the index] will get another boost, because those who didn't react will come under pressure and to buy what is available. Since the start of the year alone, they have missed three per cent."

Another trader said now that the 9,000-point barrier had been achieved, the "door was open for further rises to 9,200 or 9,300 points".

"There is momentum for gains and there is ample liquidity," he added.

On Monday, the Geneva-based inspection services firm, SGS, will be the first to announce its 2006 full-year earnings.

Most of the 25 companies in the SMI are expected to report good results, except some of the chemicals groups that have suffered from high raw material prices and increasing competition from Asia.

Nestle shares rose ten per cent last year while UBS jumped 19 per cent.

swissinfo with agencies

SMI - Swiss Market Index

The Swiss Market Index is the main index of the Swiss Exchange (SWX).

It includes 26 of Switzerland's largest listed companies.

The securities contained in the SMI currently represent more than 90% of the entire market capitalisation of all Swiss and Liechtenstein equities listed on the SWX Swiss Exchange.

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