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AGM season underway in wake of results

Stock market traders will be keeping a close eye on company AGMs Keystone Archive

Investors will be watching their share portfolios carefully this week, as more companies prepare to hold their annual general meetings (AGMs). Analysts will also be keenly watching the latest industrial production data for more evidence of an economic slowdown.

This content was published on June 22, 2001 - 13:59

Medical technology group, Disetronic, holds its AGM on Wednesday. Shareholders should be fairly pleased with the company's performance after it revealed a 12.6 per cent increase in net profit in the year to March to SFr45.8 million ($25.7 million).

On Thursday, it's the turn of software group, Logitech. Its investors have a lot to smile about because the company is a planning a ten-for-one share split of its registered shares.

The latest Swiss industrial production data are also due for release on Thursday. The market will be keeping a close eye on these numbers for any indication that the domestic economy is slowing down.

In the first quarter of 2001, industrial production rose five per cent compared to the same period last year. Analysts are expecting weaker figures in line with the United States and other parts of Europe.

Elsewhere in Switzerland, attention will be focusing on the Crans-Montana Forum, which kicks off on Thursday. The event, which attracts leaders from the world of business, government and academia, is similar to the World Economic Forum's annual meeting in Davos.

Running over four days, the meeting's themes include globalisation, international trade, and development potential in Africa and the Balkans.

A key item on the agenda is the provision of anti-Aids drugs for the developing world. South Africa's health minister, Manto Tshabalala-Msimang, is due to address the meeting, as are representatives of the Basel-based pharmaceutical giant, Novartis.

Novartis, along with 38 other drug firms, recently dropped a legal suit against the South African government, which sought to prevent the country from importing cheap generic drugs.

The guest list also includes several presidents and prime ministers from the former Soviet bloc, Africa and the Balkans, including Milo Djukanovic of Montenegro and Ion Iliescu of Romania.

Saudi Arabia's oil minister, Ali bin Ibrahim al-Naimi, and Iran's commerce minister Mohammed Shariat Madarl are also scheduled to attend.

by Tom O'Brien

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