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Published: Thursday February 27, 2014 MYT 3:35:02 PM
Updated: Thursday February 27, 2014 MYT 3:35:51 PM

Swiss GDP growth slows more than expected in fourth-quarter

ZURICH (Reuters) - The Swiss economy grew by 0.2 percent in the fourth quarter from the previous quarter, the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) said on Thursday.

The year-on-year increase was 1.7 percent.

ANALYSTS' COMMENTS:

CLAUDE MAURER, CREDIT SUISSE:

"The lower reading is mainly due to leaner net exports in goods and services. These are quite volatile so I would not overestimate the Q4 figure. The consensus is still for growth ahead."

TONY NYMAN, INFORMA GLOBAL MARKETS:

"The data of 0.2 percent quarter-on-quarter and 1.7 percent year-on-year is a slight disappointment, softer than forecast, but does include a year-on-year higher revision. It is the worst quarterly showing since the second quarter of 2012 and compares unfavourably with current leading indicators such as the continually improving KOF.

"However, the data overall shows an economy continuing its slow growth and perhaps to be further supported in 2014 by the tentatively improving economic picture in the euro zone. For now, we see no policy implications near-term, with the SNB reiterating its support for the 1.20 peg this month.

"Forex wise, we are not expecting a lasting market impact either, although the Swiss franc has been a relative outperformer over recent sessions, inevitably attracting a safe haven bid on China economic outlook and geopolitical (mostly Ukraine) worries."

((Zurich newsroom +41.58.306.7336; fax +41.44.251.0476; zurich.newsroom@reuters.com))

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