Category Archive: 3) Swiss Markets and News

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‘Yes to an initiative promoting moderately-priced housing’

The free market in Switzerland has built housing units that remain empty because they are too expensive, or in out-of-the-way places, says Marina Carobbio Guscetti. The Social Democrat senator believes that the initiative "More affordable housing" will fix these problems. It will help the middle class and the less well-off.

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Swiss franc climbs after US adds it to ‘manipulation’ watchlist

The US Treasury has called on the Swiss government to cut taxes and spend more public money, after it added the country to a watchlist of those it accuses of currency manipulation. The Swiss franc nudged up to a near three-year high against the euro on Tuesday as markets anticipated the move would limit the Swiss National Bank’s appetite for aggressive action to try to hold down its currency in future.

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US places Switzerland on trade ‘watch list’

The US Treasury Department has put Switzerland back on a biannual list of countries that are under observation because of large trade surpluses with the United States. Switzerland was previously included on the Monitoring List between October 2016 and October 2018, “having a material current account surplus and engaged in persistent, one-sided intervention in the foreign exchange market”.

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Signatures collected for vote on tax deduction for parents

Opponents of a proposal to increase tax deductions for parents have succeeded in collecting enough signatures to force a referendum on the subject. On Tuesday the leftwing Social Democratic Party submitted the necessary signatures required to trigger a referendum. The party is opposed to a “tax bonus for rich parents” and collected 60,000 signatures in two-and-a-half months to force a nationwide vote on the reform, approved by...

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Swiss researchers identify means to reduce risk of man-made earthquakes

Identifying the kind of fault or tectonic forces in an underground reservoir can reduce the risk of tremors caused by geothermal energy or carbon storage. The injection of cold pressurised water into hot impermeable rocks several kilometres underground is how underground reservoirs are created for geothermal energy.

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Blackrock, un pouvoir institutionnalisé. LHK.

Le 9 janvier 2012, le banquier central suisse démissionnait suite à une accusation de présomption de délit d’initié dans une affaire d’opérations de change sur sa fortune privée (Wikipédia), il devint dans la foulée vice-président du groupe Blackrock. Une réelle promotion dans le cadre d’un monde globalisé.

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Changes to the UBS Board of Directors

Zurich, 10 January 2020 – The Board of Directors of UBS Group AG announced today that it will nominate Nathalie Rachou and Mark Hughes for election to the Board at the Annual General Meeting on 29 April, 2020. David Sidwell and Isabelle Romy will not stand for re-election. David Sidwell will have completed a twelve year term of office and Isabelle Romy has decided to step down after eight years on the UBS Board.

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Swiss unemployment drops to new low 

The Swiss unemployment rate fell to 2.3% in 2019, according to the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO). That’s the lowest yearly rate for almost 20 years. SECO said in a statementexternal link on Friday that 106,932 people were registered with regional job centres in 2019, 9.5% less than in the previous year.

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Trump to attend World Economic Forum in Switzerland

US President Donald Trump plans to attend the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in the Swiss mountain resort of Davos this month, making up for an appearance he cancelled during last year’s US government shutdown. White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham confirmed on Wednesday that Trump would attend the annual forum, which attracts wealthy, high-profile business and political figures, along with academics and other leaders of...

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Swiss unions call for ‘social agenda’ in EU relations

Switzerland’s largest trade union group has repeated its warning that any framework deal reached with the European Union must respect measures to protect wages from cross-border competition. At the annual conference of the Swiss Trade Union Federation on Thursday, the objective of keeping wage measures in place was hammered home by group president Pierre-Yves Maillard.

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‘Farting archaeobacteria’ awarded Swiss energy prize

Flatulent bacteria, electric vehicles and a supply network for greenhouses are among the winners of this year’s Watt d’Or competition organised by the Federal Office of Energy. “What is the link between flatulence and renewable energy?” the energy office asked. “The answer is Archie, the farting archaeobacteria.”

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Swiss National Bank expects profit of CHF49 billion for 2019

The Swiss National Bank (SNB) expects to post an annual profit of CHF49 billion ($50.29 billion) for 2019, it said on Thursday, citing big gains from foreign bonds and stocks bought to dampen the value of the safe-haven Swiss franc. The profit, following a loss of CHF15 billion in 2018, means the central bank will pay out CHF2 billion to the Swiss government and cantons for last year and will hold discussions with the finance ministry on a possible...

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Swiss rents fall but property prices increase in 2019

Rents in Switzerland fell by an average of 0.5% last year but some regions bucked the trend. Last year was a good one for tenants, according to the Swiss Real Estate Offer Indexexternal link, which was published on Tuesday. December alone saw rents dropping 0.4% on average. The most significant drops were in central Switzerland (-1.7%), the Lake Geneva region (-1.1%) and northwestern Switzerland (-0.9%).

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The S&P’s Biggest Bear Capitulates

First it was Dennis Gartman shutting down his newsletter after more than three decades, lamenting a market that no longer made any sense (a lament shared by Deutsche Bank's Aleksanda Kocic), and now the market's QE4-driven meltup has forced Wall Street's biggest sellside bear to capitulate on his November call that the market will drop in 2020; instead UBS' head of US equity strategy, Francois Trahan, has joined the bullish herd hiking his year-end...

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Swatch offers compromise in watch movements deadlock

Switzerland’s largest watch maker, Swatch, says it will limit the number of movements it makes for the industry in a bid to end a long-running stand-off with the anti-trust regulator. At the end of last year, the Competition Commission (Comco) temporarily suspended deliveries of watch movements from Swatch’s ETA unit to big rivals from January 1, 2020.

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Facebook’s Libra has failed, says Switzerland’s president

Facebook’s plan to launch its digital currency Libra is unlikely to succeed Ueli Maurer, Switzerland’s president, told SRF. Maurer doesn’t think central banks will accept the basket of currencies underpinning the cryptocurrency. “The project, in this form, has thus failed” he said.

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Revolutionary idea to store green power for the grid

Stacking blocks of concrete with a crane to store energy and use the force of gravity to keep producing electricity when renewable sources are lacking: simple but revolutionary, the battery solution proposed by the Ticino start-up Energy Vault is attracting investors and customers from around the world.

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Swiss government makes it easier to get paid for work done on the train

From 1 January 2020, it will be much easier for Switzerland’s 38,000 federal government employees to get paid for working on the train, according to the newspaper Tages-Anzeiger. Until the beginning of this year, working on the train on the way to and from work was only rewarded in exceptional instances and even then it was only partially counted.

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Running a Swiss business – changes in 2020

Every year brings changes for business owners and managers. In May 2019, a majority of Swiss voters accepted a package of changes to the way companies are taxed known as The Federal Act on Tax Reform and AHV Financing (TRAF). Many of the changes flowing from this begin on 1 January 2020.

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Unemployment in Geneva higher than neighbouring France

In December last year, the Observatoire statistique transfrontalier published unemployment figures for the French region surrounding Geneva. French unemployment calculations follow the method used by the International Labour Organisation (ILO), which include all job seekers, according to Tribune de Genève.

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