Swiss stocks - Factors to watch on Feb 27

ZURICH Wed Feb 27, 2013 2:19am EST

ZURICH Feb 27 (Reuters) - Swiss stocks were set to open higher on Wednesday, in line with other European markets, with the U.S. Federal Reserve's defence of its stimulus programmes offsetting worries over Italy's political gridlock.

The Swiss blue-chip SMI was seen rising 0.4 percent, according to premarket indications by bank Julius Baer .

The following are some of the main factors expected to affect Swiss stocks on Wednesday:

HOLCIM

Swiss cement maker Holcim said it expects demand in North America, Asia and Latin America to offset a sluggish Europe and drive higher cement sales in 2013 after restructuring charges pushed it to a fourth-quarter loss.

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SWISS LIFE

Swiss Life 2012 net profit tumbled 85 percent to 93 million Swiss francs ($99.8 million) as a hefty but expected fourth quarter writedown on its German advisory arm took some of the shine off strong investment income.

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EFG INTERNATIONAL

Private bank EFG International swung to a net profit of 111 million Swiss francs ($119.2 million) in 2012 from a 294 million franc loss a year earlier after shutting unprofitable units and trimming its ranks of private bankers.

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ROCHE

Swiss drugmaker Roche Holding ROG.VX has agreed to expand access to its clinical trial data as the pharmaceutical industry faces calls for greater transparency on scientific data.

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COMPANY STATEMENTS

* Banking software maker Temenos doubled adjusted earnings per share to $0.61 in the fourth quarter versus the year-ago period and said it intended to pay out its first dividend of 0.28 francs for 2012.

* Dental implant maker Straumann said it won a legal battle against German rival Medentis Medical after a German court ruled Medentis must retract the claim its implant is "hydrophilic".

* Syngenta said Devgen has been delisted from NYSE Euronext Brussels.

ECONOMY

* The UBS Swiss consumption indicator edged lower to 1.18 in January from a revised 1.32 in December, the Swiss bank's economists said on Wednesday.

* Switzerland's lead indicator, the KOF economic barometer, is due at 0800 GMT. Analysts in a Reuters poll expect it to fall to 1.00 points in February from 1.05 points in the previous month.

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