Swiss stocks - Factors to watch on Dec 20

ZURICH Fri Dec 20, 2013 2:04am EST

ZURICH Dec 20 (Reuters) - Swiss stocks are expected to open slightly firmer on Friday, in line with other European markets, with the U.S. Federal Reserve's decision to only modestly cut its stimulus programme seen lending support.

The Swiss blue-chip SMI was expected to open up 0.1 percent at 8,035 points, according to premarket indications by Bank Julius Baer.

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

SCHINDLER

Swiss lift and escalator maker Schindler will book a 64 million Swiss franc ($71 million) charge on its stake Hyundai Elevator Co due to a slump in the Korean company's share price following plans for a capital hike.

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COMPANY STATEMENTS

* Bank am Bellevue said it had decided to participate in the U.S. tax programme as a category 3 bank.

* Helvetia Group has raised its total share in Nationale Suisse to 17.7 percent after taking over a share package amounting to 5.27 percent from the Gebaeudeversicherung Bern (GVB) for an undisclosed price.

* Goldbach Group said Michi Frank would take over as CEO on Jan. 1, 2014.

* Metall Zug expects sales in the region of 900 million Swiss francs and an increase in its operating income (EBIT) of over 10 percent for the 2013 financial year.

ECONOMY

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