Category Archive: 3) Swiss Markets and News

Main Author Investec
Investec
Investec is a distinctive Specialist Bank and Asset Manager. We provide a diverse range of financial products and services to a niche client base in three principal markets, the United Kingdom, South Africa and Australia, as well as certain other geographies. Investec’s strategic goals are motivated by the desire to develop an efficient and integrated business on an international scale through the active pursuit of clearly established core competencies in the group’s principal business areas.

Zurich homes market in highly overvalued territory, says UBS

Every quarter UBS, a bank, publishes its real estate bubble index, a report that covers real estate prices in 24 cities around the world. In the third quarter of 2019, Munich was listed as the most overvalued housing market in the world. Bubble risk was highest in Munich, Toronto, Hong Kong and Amsterdam. Frankfurt, Vancouver and Paris.

Read More »

Why Switzerland ranks near the top of the 2019 global competitiveness ranking

Switzerland made the the top 5, after dropping from 4th to 5th, in this year’s World Economic Forum (WEF) Global Competitiveness Index. Switzerland’s decline was largely due to a down weighting of a factor where it is strong, according to WEF’s Saadia Zahidi. The Global Competitive Index measures performance in 114 areas that influence a nation’s productivity.

Read More »

EU removes Switzerland from tax haven list

In December 2017, the European Union (EU) set up a blacklist and a grey list of tax havens, countries it deemed were being used to help companies and wealthy individuals reduce their tax bills. Switzerland ended up on the grey list. Nations on these lists faced reputational damage and stricter controls on financial transactions with the EU.

Read More »

Cashflow crisis looms over UN in Geneva

The United Nations is facing a serious cashflow crisis, as 63 states – including its largest contributor, the United States – have not paid their annual dues. In Geneva, officials at the UN’s European headquarters (UNOG) are considering ways to cut costs, while the host nation looks on anxiously.

Read More »

State railway company beset with fresh problems 

All the Swiss Federal Railways’ new Bombardier double-decker trains will have to go in for repairs for certain parts to be replaced, it has emerged. The news of the latest technical problems was broken by Swiss public television SRF, citing internal documents. At present, 12 out of the 59 Bombardier trains are in operation on a line between Chur (in southeastern Switzerland) and Basel in the northwestern part of the country.

Read More »

Floating solar panels unveiled in Swiss Alps

A solar panel project which could power over 6,000 households has been launched in a mountain lake in southwestern Switzerland. The Romande Energie company unveiled the first part of its floating solar project in Bourg-Saint-Pierre on Wednesday after six years of exploratory work. The installation consists of 2,240 square metres of solar panels sitting on a 36-part aluminium and polyethylene frame anchored to the bed of the mountain lake.

Read More »

EU removes Switzerland from tax haven lists 

Switzerland has acknowledged the fact that European Union will remove the country from its grey list for tax havens following a reform of the corporate tax system. “Switzerland meets and implements international tax standards. The European Union has acknowledged this...” said a statement, released by the State Secretariat for International Finance (SIF), on Thursday.

Read More »

Geneva commuters fall out of love with cars

Commuters in the Geneva region are becoming increasingly disillusioned with private cars and are embracing “multimodal” forms of transport, a survey has found. An in-depth survey of commuter behaviour in the Greater Geneva region – covering canton Geneva, the Nyon region in neighbouring canton Vaud, and France – has revealed an increasingly negative attitude towards driving.

Read More »

New Swiss 100-franc banknote blocks certain ATMs

The new CHF100 ($100) banknote, which went into circulation last month, has blocked bank ATMs in half a dozen German-speaking Swiss cantons. Bank machines belonging to the PostFinance bank do not seem to like the new blue CHF100 note, which was officially launched on September 12.

Read More »

Swiss are skilled but not so dynamic, finds ranking

Switzerland has slipped down a slot in the annual Global Competitiveness Index from the World Economic Forum (WEF). Having come in fourth in 2018, Switzerland now follows Singapore, the United States, Hong Kong and the Netherlands. The index covers 141 countries. The world economy is not ready for a major slowdown, warns WEF.

Read More »

Swiss firms give over CHF5 million a year to parties and candidates

Switzerland’s biggest firms – mainly banks, pharmaceutical firms and insurance companies - donate at least CHF5 million ($5 million) a year to political parties and candidates, a survey has revealed. The poll of 140 companies by Swiss public radio RTS, published on Tuesday, found that one in five firms donate regularly to political parties or politicians, to the tune of CHF5 million annually.

Read More »

Switzerland’s top UN diplomat in New York

When Antonio Guterres was elected United Nations Secretary General in 2016, some criticized the decision because they thought a woman should finally be at the helm of the international organisation. To his credit, Guterres has filled many of the UN’s top posts with women including Mirjana Spoljaric – Switzerland’s top ranking UN diplomat in New York.

Read More »

Switzerland shares details of 3.1 million bank accounts held by foreigners

In its second-ever data sharing exercise as part of a global automatic exchange of information (AEOI) treaty, Switzerland shared financial account information with 63 partner countries. On Monday, the Swiss Federal Tax Authority revealed that it had provided details of around 3.1 million bank accounts held by foreigners to the countries of their origin.

Read More »

‘A Swiss should run Credit Suisse’ ex-CS head tells newspaper

In an interview with the newspaper NZZ am Sonntag, former Credit Suisse CEO Oswald Grübel has criticized the large Swiss bank for its handling of the current crisis. By maintaining that CEO Tidjane Thiam was unaware of the spying affair, the bank is harming the Swiss financial sector, Grübel said in an interview published on Sunday.

Read More »

Vaud’s 2020 budget – higher spending, higher taxes

The Swiss canton of Vaud has managed to balance its 2020 budget with a small surplus of 76,000 francs. This is the 14th time in row that the canton’s budget has been in the black. At the same time planned spending is up by 2.43%, well ahead of Swiss inflation – prices were lower in September 2019 than they were in September 2018.

Read More »

Hackers attack Swiss consumer protection agency

Hackers successfully attacked the website of the Swiss Consumer Protection Foundation last month, placing links to fake stores within the agency’s online shopping pages. The hack was detected within two hours and the malicious links were removed, said the foundation, which regularly warns consumers about online fraud.

Read More »

EU to remove Switzerland from tax haven lists

European Union finance ministers are set to remove Switzerland and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) from the bloc’s lists of countries deemed to act as tax havens, an EU document said. On October 10 they are expected to remove Switzerland from the grey list that includes countries that have committed to change their tax rules to make them compliant with EU standards.

Read More »

Novartis and Microsoft to develop drugs using AI

Swiss pharmaceutical firm Novartis and computer giant Microsoft have signed a five-year partnership deal aimed at transforming the Basel-based pharma’s business - from finance to manufacturing - using artificial intelligence.

Read More »

Fête des Vignerons seeks millions to fill financial hole

The organisers of the Fête des Vignerons – a traditional winegrowers’ festival in the Swiss lakeside town of Vevey – is scrambling to cover its multi-million-franc deficit for 2019. The local winegrowers’ guild behind the once-in-a-generation private festival, which started in the 17th century, reported a CHF15 million ($14.9 million) loss for the 2019 edition on Tuesday.

Read More »

Credit Suisse braced for ‘spygate’ reputational fallout

The usually discrete world of Swiss private banking has been shaken by spying revelations at Credit Suisse, the country’s second largest wealth manager. Chairman Urs Rohner has acknowledged that the sordid affair has damaged the reputation of the bank and the Swiss financial centre.

Read More »