BRUSSELS (dpa-AFX) - Switzerland's benchmark SMI extended gains to a third straight session, as investors picked up stocks amid optimism about strong quarterly earnings and data showing a notable jump in Chinese GDP in the first quarter.
The SMI ended up 16.75 points, or 0.17%, at 9,596.60, after scaling a low of 9,571.09 and a high of 9,628.41 in the session.
On Tuesday, the index ended up 66.14 points, or 0.7%, at 9,579.85.
Shares of engineering major ABB moved up 5.4%. The company, which is in the midst of a revamp following problems with its internal financial controls, announced the resignation of its CEO Ulrich Spesshofer and named Peter Voser as interim chief. The company also unveiled its first-quarter results.
Swatch Group shares climbed up 3.5%. Richemont, Credit Suisse and Alcon gained 2.5 to 3%.
UBS Group, Adecco, SGS, Swiss Life Holding and Swiss Re also closed on firm note.
Lonza Group shares declined nearly 3%. Novartis shed about 2.6%, while Roche Holding eased 1%.
Temenos gained 3.4% after the company reported total software licensing growth of 28% in the first quarter.
In economic news from China, the National Bureau of Statistics said that China's gross domestic product expanded 6.4% in the first quarter of 2019 on a yearly basis, beating forecasts for an increase of 6.3%.
In addition, China's retail sales growth for March also beat expectations, while its fixed asset investment for the month rose in line with expectations. Retail sales climbed 8.7% year-on-year in March - beating expectations for an increase of 8.4% and up from 8.2%.
Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX