ZURICH, March 7 (Reuters) - The Swiss blue-chip SMI was seen opening 0.2 percent higher at 8,677 points on Tuesday, according to premarket indications by bank Julius Baer .
The following are some of the main factors expected to affect Swiss stocks:
The Swiss chocolate maker increased its dividend and said it expected organic sales to again grow around 6 percent this year after a lower tax rate helped boost its net profit in 2016. Shares were seen opening down 1.4 percent.
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* UBS is pushing to settle a French tax fraud investigation for less than 300 million euros, Bloomberg reported, citing people familiar with the matter.
* Chobani Hires Nestle’s Tim Brown as chief operating officer, the Wall Street Journal reported.
* Logitech International reaffirmed its 2017 outlook of 12-13 percent retail sales growth in constant currency and $225-$230 million in non-GAAP operating income. It also announced a $250 million share buyback programme as part of a three-year capital allocation framework.
* Actelion said the European Commission has granted marketing authorization for the use of Ledaga (chlormethine gel) for the treatment of mycosis fungoides-type cutaneous T-cell lymphoma.
* VP Bank reported net income of 58 million framcs for the 2016 financial year. It will propose a dividend of 4.50 francs per registered share A and 0.45 francs per registered share B.
* Santhera posted a net loss for 2016 of 35.4 million francs.
* Bucher Industries said profit 2016 amounted to 118 million franc and that it will propose a dividend of 5.00 francs. The group is expecting the current year to show a slight increase in sales and an improved operating profit margin.
* Forbo Holding said full-year group operating profit (EBIT) rose 10.1 percent to 157.2 million francs and that it will propose an increased dividend of 19 francs.
* Goldbach Group AG said full-year EBITDA rose 15.6 percent to 32.5 million francs. For 2017, the company anticipates organic sales growth in low single-digit percentage range along with a rise in EBITDA in mid single-digit percentage range.
* Switzerland’s SIX and easybank announced that SIX will sell its Commercial Issuing business in Austria together with the Issuing Support for Austrian banks to easybank.
* Geoffery Merszei was nominated as a new independent member of Oerlikon’s board of directors.
* ALSO and Media Markt said they are expanding their cooperation in Switzerland, with ALSO taking over Media Markt’s main warehouse in the middle of 2017 to service its retail stores across the country.
* J. Safra Sarasin Group said its local entity in Germany will no longer offer private banking services in the future due to the lack of critical mass, representing less than 1 percent of the Group’s assets under management.
* PSP Swiss Property said its net profit fell to 134.9 million francs from 187.7 million francs a year earlier.
* The Swiss Federal Treasury said on Tuesday it was reopening its 1.25 percent bond maturing in 2026 and its 2.25 percent bond maturing in 2031 in a tender. (Reporting by Zurich newsroom)