October 22, 2018 / 4:58 AM / 22 days ago

Swiss stocks - Factors to watch on Oct. 22

ZURICH/BERLIN, Oct 22 (Reuters) - The Swiss blue-chip SMI was seen opening 0.3 percent higher at 8,896 points on Monday, according to premarket indications by bank Julius Baer .

Here are some of the main factors that may affect Swiss stocks:

NOVARTIS

An experimental cancer drug that Novartis hopes will raise the profile of its oncology portfolio cut the risk of death or disease progression by more than a third in breast cancer patients with a hard-to-target gene mutation.

ROCHE

* An immunotherapy cocktail from Roche helped slow an aggressive type of breast cancer where new treatments have proven elusive, offering positive news for the Swiss drugmaker as it chases medicines produced by its rivals.

* Also, Roche’s entrectinib cancer pill was shown to shrink tumours in 57 percent of patients within a group that can only be identified via genetic profiling, as the Swiss drugmaker challenges an alliance of Bayer and Loxo Oncology in a new targeted treatment area.

SWISS RE

Swiss Re has held discussions with Chinese authorities about an investment in embattled insurer Anbang Insurance Group Co., Bloomberg reported, citing people with knowledge of the matter.

UBS

Swiss bank UBS Group AG has asked its China wealth management staff to reconsider their travel plans to the country after authorities there asked one of its bankers to delay her departure from Beijing to meet with local officials, a person familiar with the matter said.

IPO MARKET

Credit Suisse investment bank head Jens Haas said he expected two to three initial public offerings in Switzerland in the first half of 2019, in an interview with Swiss newspaper Finanz und Wirtschaft published on Monday.

COMPANY STATEMENTS

* Addex Therapeutics said its epilepsy drug ADX71149 was included in a review of 13 of the latest advances in managing this disease that was published in the October issue of “Epilepsia”.

* Dottikon said it reached considerably lower net sales and net income in the first half-year 2018/19 compared to the year-ago period.

* Kuros Biosciences AG said it has been granted a U.S. patent for covering a method for producing osteoinductive materials.

* Phoenix Mecano said it was planning to acquire an 80 percent stake in China-based Mei Hui Machinery Co., Ltd as part of its strategy to boost local value added in growth regions.

* Swissquote said it was enabling its clients to participate in Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs).

* VP Bank said it was taking over fund management and custodian function for Luxembourg-based Carnegie investment funds.

ECONOMY

No economic data due. (Reporting by Zurich newsroom and Berlin Speed Desk)

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