Category Archive: 3.) Investec

Coronavirus: Switzerland plans to lift all restrictions on Schengen movement

Switzerland’s Federal Council plans to lift all travel restrictions and re-establish free movement of persons across the Schengen area no later than 6 July 2020 and possibly as early as mid June, it announced today. If the epidemiological evolution allows, restrictions on entering, working and living in Switzerland will be lifted for all Schengen states from mid-June and no later than 6 July, said the government.

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Swisscom network experiencing problems

Since 11:50 am on 26 May 2020, Swisscom’s mobile and landline networks have been experiencing problems. Landline and mobile network calls are currently impaired for business and private customers, according to Swisscom.

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EasyJet customer data hacked

Yesterday, EasyJet announced that a “highly sophisticated” cyber-attack had affected around 9 million customers. The company said its “investigation found that the email address and travel details of approximately 9 million customers were accessed. These affected customers will be contacted in the next few days. If you are not contacted then your information has not been accessed.”  

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Coronavirus: anti-lockdown protests in Switzerland

Over the weekend, hundreds rallied against lockdown measures across Switzerland in the cities of Bern, Zurich, Basel and St. Gallen. Anti-lockdown protesters in these cities flouted rules introduced in mid-March banning public groups of more than five people, designed to reduce the spread of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. The protestors consider the rules in breach of their fundamental rights.

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Most think Switzerland is reopening fast or too fast, according to survey

A survey published on 7 May 2020, suggests only 36% of Swiss support the government’s calendar for reopening the country after the Covid-19 shutdown. 23% think the plan to reopen is too slow, while 42% think it is fast or too fast. However, 60% said they had confidence in the government.

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Coronavirus: new rules for Switzerland’s restaurants

Restaurants in Switzerland will be able to reopen on Monday 11 May 2020. But they’ll need to follow strict rules that were published this week. The seven pages of detailed restaurant rules will make dining in the time of Covid-19 quite different to what we’re accustomed to.

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Swiss GDP set for worst fall in decades

A team of economic experts working for the Swiss government forecasts a 6.7% fall in GDP and unemployment to rise to 3.9% in Switzerland in 2020. If these predictions prove right, it will be the biggest slump in economic activity since 1975.

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Coronavirus: Switzerland extends lockdown until 26 April

On 8 April 2020, Switzerland’s government decided to extend the country’s lockdown measures for a further week. In a press release the Federal Council said the measures would be extended for another week and then possibly progressively loosened before the end of April.

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Coronavirus: Swiss tourism expected to lose 6.4 billion francs

Tourism is one of the sectors hardest hit by the coronavirus and the response to it. Figures from a study by HES-SO Valais published by the newspaper Blick suggest the industry will see revenues in Switzerland drop 18%, or CHF 6.4 billion, in 2020.

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Close to one fifth of households in Switzerland behind on debt payments

In 2017, 18.9% of Switzerland’s population lived in a household with outstanding debt repayments, a percentage that has rose from 17.7% over the proceeding 4 years. The most common forms of outstanding debts were taxes, health insurance premiums and phone bills. 9.9% of households had outstanding tax payments, 7.3% owed health insurance money and 5.2% had an outstanding telecommunications bill.

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Swiss Post stops accepting parcels and letters to China

Swiss Post has said it will no longer accept packages addressed to China, according to Tribune de Genève. Because of the covid-19 virus, airlines have stopped or drastically reduced flights to China. This fall in air traffic has reduced postal service capacity to China by two thirds.

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The labels that show how much more international retailers charge Swiss

To simplify labelling, many international retailers put recommended retail prices (RRP) for multiple nations on the same label, like the one below. The Swiss retail price premium laid bare.Labels such as these show how much more Swiss customers are being charged compared to customers in other countries.

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Swiss private bank Pictet to drop fossil fuel investments

Recently, the private bank Pictet, based in Geneva, announced plans to eliminate all of its investments in companies actively associated with the production and extraction of fossil fuels, according to a press release.

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Swiss environmental agency sets no date for 5G launch

Earlier this week, Switzerland’s Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN) announced it had contacted the cantons at the end of January 2020, informing them it had not set a date for switching on 5G networks. However, mobile networks plan to continue installing 5G equipment after rolling out more than 2,000 antenna last year – a map showing where the new antenna are can be viewed here.

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Switzerland most expensive country in 2020

It will come as little surprise to many that Switzerland has been ranked the world’s most expensive country. Put together by the magazine CEO World, the ranking pulls cost of living data on accommodation, clothing, taxi fares, utilities, internet, groceries, transport, and dining out, from a number of other studies.

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Philip Morris International to axe jobs in Switzerland

The tobacco company Philip Morris International (PMI) has unveiled plans to cut jobs at its sites in Lausanne and Neuchâtel. A total of around 265 jobs are likely to go. Most of them will be transferred to the UK, Portugal and Poland. The company has opened formal processes in both cantons and those affected will be informed between now and the end of March 2020, it said.

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Credit Suisse accused of spying on Greenpeace

According to SonntagsZeitung, the bank Credit Suisse has been spying on Greenpeace. Nearly three years ago, the environmental organisation thwarted security and disrupted the bank’s general assembly with a stunt aimed at shaming Credit Suisse for financing Energy Transfer, a company involved in the construction of the controversial Dakota Access oil pipeline running through reserves in the US state of Dakota.

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Trump should be disinvited to Davos, says St. Gallen University economist

Speaking to CNN Money, Markus Will, a senior economist at St. Gallen University, described Trump’s speech, in which he didn’t mention climate once, as a “contradiction to the values of Davos.” “It was a nationalistic, domestic, state of the union address from Davos rather than an improving of the state of the world speech which you should do in Davos”, he said, before adding, “you should disinvite him cordially for next year.

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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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Swiss parliament approves new 6 billion franc fighter jet purchase

Before Christmas, Switzerland’s parliament approved the purchase of a new fleet of fighter jets costing CHF 6 billion, according to RTS. The plan, which aims to defend Swiss airspace beyond 2030, has now been approved by both Switzerland’s upper and lower houses.

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