ZURICH, July 4 (Reuters) - The Swiss blue-chip SMI was seen opening 0.2 percent lower at 8,608 points on Wednesday, according to premarket indications by bank Julius Baer .
Here are some of the main factors that may affect Swiss stocks:
* The Swiss-French cement maker bought a ready mix concrete maker in the United States as it seeks smaller acquisitions to drive growth, the Zurich-based company said in a statement on Tuesday.
* The world’s biggest cememt maker also said it appointed Miljan Gutovic as the head of region Middle East Africa and member of the executive committee, effective as of July 2018, as it tries to rejuvenate a struggling business region.
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The world’s top food companies and farmers of crops such as beet sugar are pitted against each other as they lobby the U.S. government over plans to label genetically engineered ingredients.
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Chairman Andreas Umbach told Finanz und Wirtschaft in an interview published on Wednesday that the company has the necessary financial strength for acquisitions, but that it has not seen any attractive candidates since its initial public offering, apart from a small purchase in Australia.
* Comet issued a sales and profit warning for 2018, saying it now expects full-year sales of 440-460 million Swiss francs and an EBITDA margin of 10-12 percent.
* Implenia said it appointed Andre Wyss as chief executive to succeed Anton Affentranger on Oct. 1.
* Partners Group said it acquired four office assets totaling over 130,000 square meters of lettable area across Belgium and Germany on behalf of its clients with a total transaction value of around 320 million euros.
* Sika said it successfully placed 550 million Swiss francs worth of triple-tranche bonds
* Straumann said it acquired a 30 percent stake in its biomaterials partner Botiss for an undisclosed amount and increased its stake in high-precision dental prosthetics provider Createch from 30 to 100 percent for a purchase consideration of approximately 14 million Swiss francs.
* Wisekey said sales rose 36 percent to $25.7 million in the first half of 2018 and it expects sales of around $60 million for the full year.
Reporting by Zurich newsroom