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Shares rise, franc falls

The blue-chip Swiss Market Index (SMI) dipped in midday trading but ended Thursday up 5.02 per cent at 5032.75 points, just below the intraday high of 5048.08.

The Swiss Performance Index (SPI) also booked a solid gain of 4.60 per cent, closing at 4597.72 points.

The rebound from Wednesday’s 3.84 per cent tumble was led by Zurich Financial Services, which saw its stock rise 10.5 per cent.

UBS was just behind on 10.07 per cent, with fellow banks Credit Suisse and Julius Bär notching up gains of 7.7 per cent and 7.1 per cent respectively.

Also on Thursday the Swiss franc fell back against the US dollar and the euro as the markets digested the Swiss National Bank’s (SNB) liquidity measures and hints by senior officials that further action could follow to correct the currency's “massive overvaluation”.

The euro jumped five per cent to 1.0813 by early evening in Zurich, while the dollar rose 4.4 per cent to 0.7593 francs, a day after the SNB announced it was increasing retail banks' overdrafts and conducting foreign exchange swap transactions to soften the franc. and agencies

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