The week ahead: A flurry of first half results

Another subdued set of trading sessions on the Zurich stock exchange is expected this week. Market trading will be down because many dealers are on holiday.

This content was published on July 17, 2000 - 07:54

However, this could lead to a more volatile situation because smaller trades tend to lead to larger fluctuations.

On the corporate front, much attention will be fixed on Monday's meeting of shareholders at the algroup which will decide whether to approve the merger with the Canadian aluminium company, Alcan.

Also on Monday, first half results are expected from the automotive products group, Georg Fischer, based in Schaffhausen.

"With various large orders totalling several hundred million Swiss francs, the automotive products group of the company has embarked on a substantial growth phase," the company said in a statement last month. "Further large orders are expected as a result of development projects." it added

Results for the first six months are expected on Thursday from the Clariant specialty chemicals group, based near Basel.

In the first quarter, Clariant reported sales of SFr2.6 billion, up 20 per cent on the previous year's first quarter. The increase was driven by the growing momentum of key markets and by the acquisition of the British fine chemicals company BTP.

For the rest of the year, Clariant assumes that the economy will steadily improve and it expects a significant improvement of the profit situation

The Swiss-Swedish technology group, ABB, is also reporting its first half figures on Thursday.

In April, ABB reported a strong increase in earnings, margins and orders in the first three months of 2000.

The ABB president and chief executive officer, Göran Lindahl, said the record first quarter showed that the move into businesses based on knowledge, high-tech, service and industrial IT was paying off and ABB's underlying profitability was growing steadily.

by Tom O'Brien

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