Swiss stock markets down sharply in line with global slump

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Fears of a US recession hit Swiss stock markets as shares take a down-turn world-wide.

22 January 2008 

ZURICH - The Swiss stock market opened sharply down Tuesday in line with a global slump in shares over fears of a US recession.

The blue-chip SMI lost 4.5% in the first minutes of trading and fell below the psychologically important 7,000-mark to 6,958.63 points.

Among the biggest losers were specialty chemicals maker Clariant AG, which lost almost 9%.

Shares in Swiss Reinsurance Co. dropped 7.2%, a day after the world's biggest re-insurance company saw some 10% wiped off the value of its stock.

The broader SPI index fell 3.8% to 5,961.92 points in early trading.

[Copyright ap 2008]

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