ZURICH, July 1 (Reuters) - Swiss stocks were expected to open flat to slightly higher on Tuesday, with investors sticking to the sidelines ahead of key U.S. jobs data and a rate decision from the European Central Bank later this week.
The Swiss blue-chip SMI was seen opening almost unchanged at 8555 points, according to premarket indications by bank Julius Baer.
The following are some of the main factors expected to affect Swiss stocks on Tuesday:
* Clariant said it closed the sale of its Water Treatment business in Africa to AECI, domiciled in South Africa, on June 30 for 34 million Swiss francs ($38.31 million).
* Schaffner Group concluded long-term credit agreements with its four principle banks, totaling 60 million francs.
* Interroll said it expected to complete the purchase of Pert Engineering in China on August 1.
* Meyer Burger has been awarded a contract by Hanplast and FreeVolt for its technology line in Poland.
* Bravofly updated its financial calendar and confirmed that it had faced increased competition in its core markets since the second quarter of 2014.
* PubliGroupe said the sale of its media sales division, Publicitas, to German company Aurelius closed June 30.
* Gategrop said it extended an ongoing contract with Virgin Australia for all domestic and short-haul international flights, set to expire in 2017, by two years to 2019.
June PMI data due at 0730 GMT
$1 = 0.8874 Swiss Francs