Tag Archive: Business & Economy

VAT now applied to most foreign online shopping from 1 January 2019

In 2016, Switzerland’s government decided to tighten the VAT exemption on imported purchases, a move that affects most online orders from foreign retailers. The new rules took effect on 1 January 2019 – they were originally planned for 1 January 2018 but systems and processes were not ready.

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Police Warn of fake Swiss Franc Notes

Since the beginning of December 2018 more and more counterfeit 100 Swiss franc notes have been appearing in the Swiss canton of Valais in and around Sion and Conthey. The fake notes, which the local Police say can be spotted if compared to real ones, have been making their way into circulation via shopping centres, kiosks and service stations in the Sion and Conthey region.

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Swiss Unemployment Benefits Cut for a one-day filing delay

Switzerland’s unemployment benefits might be generous but they are strictly policed, as one recipient recently discovered. For a period of up to approximately two years after losing a job, most workers in Switzerland receive 70% of their former salary up to a maximum of CHF 88,200 a year – the amount paid varies depending on circumstances1.

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Majority favours later retirement for women, according to survey

In Switzerland, the official retirement age for women is 64, a year earlier than it is for men. A poll by gfs.bern shows that around two thirds are in favour of raising the retirement age of women to 65. Only 16% are against the idea, with a further 18% somewhat against it. Men (78%) are more in favour of the change than women (54%), according to the newspaper 20 Minutes.

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TV Recording could be under threat in Switzerland

With TV recording there’s no need to miss programmes just because they’re on at the wrong time. And, when it’s time to watch them, it’s easy to fast forward through the adverts, something that can’t be done when watching live. In Switzerland, television recording is offered by big distributers, such as Swisscom, Sunrise and UPC. Broadcasters don’t provide it.

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Swiss VAT might rise to fund lower company tax rates

Historically, Switzerland has offered certain foreign companies special preferential tax deals in order to attract them. In response to international pressure, the current system is to be phased out replacing preferential tax rates with lower universal ones in the hope that these companies will stay.

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Swiss Offshore Wealth Management Sector still World’s Largest by far

A report by The Boston Consulting Group highlights the size of Switzerland’s personal offshore wealth management sector. Total personal offshore wealth grew by 6% to reach US$8.2 trillion in 2017. US$2.3 trillion (28%) of this was managed in Switzerland. The top three offshore centres: Switzerland ($2.3 trillion), Hong Kong ($1.1 trillion) and Singapore ($0.9 trillion) made up more than half (52%) of the total.

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Vaud Plans Tax Cuts

The residents of Vaud are among the highest taxed in Switzerland. In 2016, a single person in Lausanne earning CHF 100,000 paid CHF 16,050 in cantonal and communal tax on top of CHF 1,840 of federal tax. This was the fourth highest across all of Switzerland’s 26 cantonal capitals, and almost triple Zug, the lowest, where the figure was CHF 5,750 – see chart below.

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Switzerland’s vote to change its monetary system – sensible or silly?

Sometimes Swiss voters are presented with questions that only specialists are equipped to answer. The vote on 10 June 2018 to change their monetary system appears to be one of these. On the surface it appears simple. Upon closer inspection it contains much complexity and uncertainty, compounded by a widespread misunderstanding of how the financial system works – banks do not act simply as intermediaries, lending out the deposits that savers place...

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Switzerland – a definition of middle class

A recent survey calculates 60.1% of Switzerland’s population was middle class in 2015, a figure that has remained broadly stable since 1998, reaching its highest in 2009 (61.3%) and lowest in 2013 (56.8%). But what is middle class in Switzerland? According to Switzerland’s Federal Statistical Office, it is anyone living in a household with a gross income between 70% and 150% of the gross median income.

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Swiss federal finances – surplus of billions in 2017

While many national governments, such as the US and UK, regularly spend more than they collect, Switzerland managed a CHF 2.8 billion surplus in 2017. In addition, CHF 2 billion of withholding tax is expected, which would push the surplus up to CHF 4.8 billion.

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Switzerland tops latest financial secrecy index

While Switzerland isn’t the most financially secretive nation in the Tax Justice Network’s recently published report, its combination of size and secrecy pushed it into first place, the worst rank in the Financial Secrecy Index 2018. Size is factored in because it measures the damage a nation’s financial secrecy has on the world, says The Tax Justice Network.

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Income inequality in Switzerland remains stable after redistribution

Income inequality in Switzerland has remained stable according to a report published by Switzerland’s Federal Statistical Office. A key measure of inequality involves dividing the income share of the top 20% by that of the bottom 20%, a measure known as S80/S20. 1 is complete equality.

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Airbnb charges some customers more than others, particularly the Swiss

Many Swiss residents travel to neighbouring eurozone countries for their holidays. These countries are close and Swiss francs go far there. However, to get the most out of a strong currency you need a good exchange rate. If a Swiss resident presenting euro cash at a checkout in Germany or France was told they couldn’t pay in euros because they live in Switzerland – “I’m sorry sir but you live in Switzerland, you must pay in Swiss francs at our...

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Amazon coming to Switzerland

According to the newspaper Bilanz, Amazon has signed an agreement with Swiss post to provide rapid customs clearance. The head of postal customs, Felix Stierli, confirmed discussions with the company.A maximum customs clearance time of 3 hours will allow 24-hour delivery, one element of Amazon’s Prime offer.

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Swiss still richest, according to Credit Suisse

The Credit Suisse 2017 Global Wealth Report, shows total global wealth rose 6.4% to USD 280 trillion in 2016, taking it to the its highest level since 2007, before the financial meltdown in 2008. Globally, average wealth per adult was USD 56,540. In Switzerland, the same figure was USD 537,600 (CHF 533,000), close to ten times the global average, placing Switzerland in the lead, if Iceland – with unreliable data – is ignored.

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Swiss Rail to launch app that lets you pay when you arrive

Swiss Rail plans to test a new smartphone app that will charge you when you arrive. The app will automatically search for the cheapest fare once the journey has ended, promising users the lowest possible fare. The new app, which will be added to Mobile Preview, will be tested in 2018.

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Switzerland not the most expensive in Europe for some mobile packages

Yesterday, the price comparison website Verivox published a study comparing mobile phone costs across 13 european countries. On most measures Switzerland was the most expensive, and by a wide margin. A plan including 100 minutes of talk and 1 Go (gigaoctet1) of data per month costs an average of CHF 25 per month in Switzerland

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European and Swiss stocks higher on bank rally

The Swiss Market Index, along with other European markets, is trading slightly higher this week after financials rallied on merger and acquisition rumors and hopes for improved growth. European banks, the industry group battered the most so far this year, lead gains after it emerged that Deutsche Bank AG and Commerzbank AG executives held talks about a potential merger in early August this year.

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Swiss banks cut 4.1 percent of local jobs in first half as profit falls

Banks in Switzerland reduced their domestic workforce by 4.1 percent in the first half as companies combined and made cost cuts to stem declining profitability, a survey by the nation’s main bank association showed.

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