Novartis AG (NVS) Revamp Hits Resistance in Switzerland  
11/22/2011 6:35:38 AM

Novartis AG's restructuring is running into resistance in Switzerland amid strike warnings from unions who oppose the pharma giant's 1,100 local layoffs, and are calling on management to abort a planned factory closure. The strike threats come as public ire over Novartis' layoff plans coincide with broader concerns about job security in Switzerland. There are fears that, because of the strong Swiss franc, some 40,000 jobs could be cut in the country next year. Over the past few weeks, several export firms such as high-tech company Kudelski SA and industrial component maker Bobst Group SA slashed more than 1,000 jobs. The layoffs in the export sector came as banking giants such as UBS AG and Credit Suisse Group (CS) also massively reduced staff.