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Swiss firms record solid half-year results

The majority of Swiss companies published first-half figures that were considerably better than last year as the global economy continues to recover.

Economists point in particular to growth in the emerging markets and rigorous cost controls for the improved results.

Swiss industry has directly and indirectly been taking advantage of the recovery of its most important trading partner, Germany. The country recorded quarterly growth between April and June of 2.2 per cent, the highest increase in 20 years.

German customers are buying Swiss goods not only for their own use but also for their exports, according to analyst Jérôme Schupp at Syz & Co.

Janwillem Acket, chief economist at Bank Julius Bär, says that German exports, boosted by a weak euro, are providing an economic stimulus for Switzerland.

For example, after many months in the doldrums, German car makers are moving back into gear, which helps Swiss suppliers sell their products to the sector.

Schupp also points to Switzerland’s two large banks, UBS and Credit Suisse, which are “extremely solid”, with levels of shareholders’ equity that are clearly above the average.

The economists also find that Swiss companies have not suffered too much from the strength of the franc against the weak euro. But, they say, figures for the second half will provide a clearer picture. and agencies

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR