Swiss stocks - Factors to watch on August 21

ZURICH Thu Aug 21, 2014 2:13am EDT

ZURICH Aug 21 (Reuters) - Swiss stocks were seen opening a touch higher on Thursday, tracking gains in U.S. stocks after minutes from the Federal Reserve's July meeting prompted investors to believe that rates will stay low for a considerable time.

The Swiss blue-chip SMI was seen opening 0.1 percent higher at 8,536 points, according to premarket indications by bank Julius Baer.

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

NOBEL BIOCARE

Nobel Biocare, the Swiss dental implant maker in talks with potential buyers about the sale of the company, raised its profit margin target for this year after net profit almost doubled in the second quarter.

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COMPANY STATEMENTS

* Basilea said the European Medicines Agency accepted its isavuconazole marketing authorization application for review.

* BCV said it had net profit of 154 million Swiss francs in the first half of 2014.

* Kardex AG said net profit rose to 9.5 million euros in the first half of 2014.

* Implenia said its consolidated profit fell to 17 million Swiss francs in the first half of 2014.

* Peach Property Group said profit before tax rose to 5.9 million Swiss francs in the first half of 2014.

* Schmolz + Bickenbach said it had net income of 22.8 million euros in the second quarter and is cautiously optimistic for the full year.

* Cham Paper Group Holding said it had a net profit of 3.6 million Swiss francs in the first half of 2014.

* Von Roll said it had a net loss of 3.6 million Swiss francs in the first half of 2014.

* Cicor said its net profit rose to 1.8 million Swiss francs in the first half.

* Looser Group said it achieved consolidated net income of 9.7 million Swiss francs in the first half of 2014.

* Kudelski said it generated net income from continuing operations of 18.3 million Swiss francs in the first half of 2014.

* Kuoni said it had a net loss of 14 million Swiss francs in the first half of 2014 and expects a net result around prior-year level for the full year.

* Gategroup said it had a net loss of 6.5 million Swiss francs in the second quarter.

* Schindler Holding AG said it expected net gains of 130 million Swiss francs from increasing its shareholding in XJ-Schindler Elevator Co. Ltd to 51 percent from 46 percent.

* Comet Holding AG said sales rose 25 percent in the first half to 132.6 million Swiss francs, generating net income of 4.4 million, up 64.9 percent. It expects sales between 275-295 million francs in 2014 and EBITDA margin of 13-14 percent.

* Orior said revenues inched up 1.9 percent in the first half to 253.1 million francs. But profit fell to 10.6 million, hurt by record-high raw material prices. It said it expects prices to ease in late autumn, making it confident about the second half of the year.

* Schlatter said its order intake increased to 61.0 million francs in the first half compared to 51.6 million a year earlier. It posted a net loss of 1 million francs as a low order backlog at the start of the year weighed.

ECONOMY

* Exports from Switzerland rose by a real 4.5 percent in July to 19.26 billion Swiss francs (21.08 billion US dollar), the Federal Customs Office said on Thursday.

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