Swiss financial market shrugs off US reprisals

Swiss shares managed to recoup early losses Keystone

The attacks on Afghanistan were certainly the main factor in the market on Monday and the SMI was under pressure early on, shedding around 2 per cent of its value. But it recovered in the afternoon to end the day roughly the same as at Friday's close at 5952.9.

This content was published on October 8, 2001 - 17:58

The rally began when New York opened for trading without suffering big losses early on.

The SMI closed down one per cent at 5954.9 on Friday, but has been making some recovery from the 4973.5-point low set on Friday September 21 in the wake of the September 11 attacks on New York and Washington.

Bid and offer spreads widened amid uncertainty about how long the attacks on Afghanistan might last and what wider impact they may have on other markets.

Zurich Financial was one stock in negative focus after Europe's third largest insurer said it was raising its estimates for pre-tax losses tied to the impact of the attacks in the US to $700-900 million, from a previous estimate of less than $400 million.

Its shares dropped 4 per cent to SFr335. At one point they were down 14 per cent.

On the currency market, the swiss franc also relinquished most of its early gains against the dollar although dealers said the franc could yet strengthen considerably if there is a prolonged campaign of air attacks.

swissinfo with agencies

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