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ZURICH, July 13 (Reuters) - The Swiss blue-chip SMI was seen opening 0.2 percent higher at 9,032 points on Thursday, according to premarket indications by bank Julius Baer .
The following are some of the main factors expected to affect Swiss stocks:
The chocolate and cocoa product maker confirmed its mid-term targets after new outsourcing contracts and the streamlining of its cocoa portfolio helped sales volume growth accelerate to 5.5 percent in the third quarter.
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Novartis AG's pioneering cancer drug won the backing of a federal advisory panel on Wednesday, paving the way for the first gene therapy to be approved in the United States.
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Credit Suisse Group AG has appointed Robert Willoughby to the role of senior advisor for its healthcare investment banking group, according to a memo reviewed by Reuters and confirmed by a spokesman for Credit Suisse.
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* Partners Group reported first-half client demand of 6.9 billion euros, investments of $5.6 billion, and said it has increased its full-year guidance for new client commitments to 10-12 billion euros.
* Bossard Holding said first-half net income was up 44.7 percent at 45.3 million Swiss francs.
* DKSH Holding said first-half profit after tax was up 1.7 percent at 93.3 million francs.
* Flughafen Zurich AG said passenger numbers increased by 10.6 percent in June to 2,629,470 passengers.
* Following the purchase of additional shares, ChemChina's participation in Syngenta has exceeded 98 percent of Syngenta's share capital, Syngenta said.
* Peach Property Group has expanded its real estate portfolio in North Rhine-Westphalia with the acquisition of 85 apartments in Muelheim an der Ruhr. It has been agreed not to disclose the purchase price, the company said.
* Geberit said it had reached an agreement with the unions to close two plants in France and said it recognised total costs of 44 million Swiss francs in the second quarter for the closure.
* Hypothekarbank Lenzburg AG said it generated a profit of 9.9 million Swiss francs in the first half of 2017, stable versus the year-ago period.
* Zur Rose Group AG said the greenshoe option for its IPO was fully exercised.
* Swiss producer and import prices for June due at 0715 GMT
Reporting by Zurich newsroom