After a flat start and a subsequent weak spell that lasted still about a couple of hours past noon, the Swiss market emerged into positive territory, but gave up most its gains in the closing minutes of the session on Thursday.
The mood was largely cautious with investors tracking news about the spread of coronavirus infections in the country, and looking ahead to an announcement from U.S. President-elect Joe Biden about additional relief package.
The benchmark SMI, which rose to 10,891.87 in late afternoon trades, ended the day with a small gain of 3.93 points or 0.04% at 10,850.81.
Swatch Group, up nearly 3%, was the top gainer in the SMI index. UBS Group, Swiss Life Holding, Alcon, Swiss Re and ABB gained 0.6 to 1.1%. LafargeHolcim, Richemont, Novartis and SGS also ended on firm note.
Geberit shares tumbled more than 5.5% after the company said a stronger franc stripped out 136 million Swiss francs ($153.15 million) from its sales during 2020.
Sika ended lower by 2.3% and Givaudan lost 1.4%, while Swisscom and Lonza Group lost 0.9% and 0.7%, respectively.
In the midcap space, Dufry rallied 3.2% and Straumann Holding gained 2.1%. Vifor Pharma, AMS, Julius Baer and Helvetia gained 1.4 to 1.5%, while Galenica Sante slid 1.4%.
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