ZURICH, April 27 (Reuters) - The Swiss blue-chip SMI was seen opening 0.1 percent easier at 8,823 points on Thursday, according to premarket indications by bank Julius Baer .
Here are some of the main factors expected to affect Swiss stocks:
Swiss drugmaker first-quarter sales rose 4 percent, more than expected, as the biggest maker of oncology medicines was helped by its new cancer immunotherapy Tecentriq and by strong sales of its older drugs.
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First-quarter sales and operating profit beat expectations as the Swiss chemicals maker said it was bolstered by acquisitions and robust demand in regions including Europe, Asia and North America.
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Switzerland's largest-listed asset manager holds its annual shareholder meeting amid a public campaign by activist Swiss hedge fund RBR for a new CEO and three seats on the board.
Chairman Urs Rohner believes he has the support of most shareholders, he told Bilanz magazine ahead of what is expected to be a stormy annual shareholders meeting on Friday. (Full Story) "Based on various conversations with many shareholders I assume I am supported by the majority," Rohner was quoted as saying.
Switzerland's central bank posted a profit of 7.9 billion Swiss francs in the first three months of 2017, it said Thursday, boosted by gains from the huge foreign currency reserves built up during its long campaign to weaken the Swiss franc.
A U.S. judge has ordered UBS Group to face a lawsuit by a former bond strategist who said he was fired in retaliation for refusing to publish misleading research reports and complaining about being pressured to do so.
Hearing an appeal by Novartis, U.S. Supreme Court justices on Wednesday struggled over whether to speed up the time it takes to bring to the market copycat versions of biologic drugs, expensive medicines that can generate billions of dollars in sales for drug makers.
* Actelion Ltd says J&J deal set to close towards end of Q2
* Straumann Holding AG Q1 group revenue climbs 20 percent in Swiss Francs to CHF 266 million; Full-Year guidance for organic revenue growth raised to low double-digit range
* Sulzer AG Q1 order intake of 757.6 million Swiss francs ($762.79 million) compared with 684.6 million francs in the same period of the previous year
* Bucher Industries AG Q1 net sales up 2 percent to 616 million Swiss francs, order intake up 14 percent to 635 million francs
* HBM Healthcare Investments AG commits 20 million euros ($21.81 million) in growth capital to Switzerland based Amicus SA
* Gurit Holding AG said signed an acquisition agreement with PH Windsolutions for an undisclosed purchase price
* Allreal Holding said it shareholder sydicate accord had ended as a result of changes in its statutes
Switzerland ran a merchandise trade surplus of 3.10 billion Swiss francs ($3.12 billion) in March, the Federal Customs Office said on Thursday. Watch sector exports rose a nominal 10.3 percent
Reporting by Zurich newsroom