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Blue-chip shares plummet amid global jitters

The Swiss stock exchange has suffered its worst day since September 11, 2001, with banks and insurance companies among the hardest hit.

Zurich's blue-chip SMI index lost 6.12 per cent of its value on Monday as European markets absorbed the effects of the global financial crisis.

Shares in private bank Julius Baer led the sell-off, ending 15.3 per cent lower than at the close on Friday.

Swiss Re suffered a 13.4 per cent drop in the price of its stock, while shares in Switzerland's largest bank UBS lost 12.8 per cent of their value.

Swiss-Swedish electrical engineering firm ABB was also hit, closing almost ten per cent lower.

European shares posted their worst day on record and the Dow Jones industrial
average slipped below 10,000 points on Wall Street for the first time since October 2004 as markets reeled on credit jitters and fears of the fallout from a potential global recession.

This followed the emergency rescue of two big European banks and a move by several European governments to guarantee bank deposits.


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