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The business week ahead

After a week that contained some major economic data for the Swiss economy, traders will no doubt be consolidating their positions on the Swiss market over the next few days.

With little in the way of fresh domestic economic data expected, the focus will return to the United States dollar's strength against the euro and the Swiss franc.

Last week's increase in interest rates at the European Central Bank (ECB) failed to bolster the weaker euro. More dollar strength against the euro and the Swiss franc is expected over the coming week, following the Swiss National Bank's decision to leave its interest rates steady despite the ECB's decision.

On the corporate front, third quarter sales figures will be released by the medical technology group, Synthes Stratec, on Tuesday.

In August, the company revealed a 45 per cent increase in first half net profit and predicted that profits would continue to outpace sales growth over the remainder of the year.

On Wednesday, shareholders at life sciences group Novartis will have the chance to vote on the resolutions related to the spin-off and the combination of Novartis Agribusiness and Zeneca Agrochemicals to form Syngenta. The extraordinary general meeting will take place in Basel.

Also on Wednesday, Switzerland's biggest bank, UBS, will be organising a conference in the town of Martigny in canton Valais. Experts there will be looking at the outlook for the construction sector here in Switzerland.

by Tom O'Brien

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