Tag Archive: Business

Credit Suisse to charge wealthy clients negative interest rates

Credit Suisse has joined the likes of UBS and Post Finance in charging rich clients to park their wealth in its vaults. It will pass on the cost of the central bank’s negative interest rates to both private individuals and corporate accounts above certain thresholds. From November 15, corporate clients will be charged -0.85% interest on cash holdings above CHF10 million ($10 million), Credit Suisse confirmed on Friday.

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Commodities trader Gunvor held criminally liable for corruption

The Geneva-based trading company Gunvor has been ordered to pay almost CHF94 million ($94.6 million), including a fine of CHF4 million over bribery in Africa. The commodities trader failed to prevent its employees and agents from bribing public officials between 2008 and 2011 in order to gain access to the petroleum markets in the Republic of Congo and Ivory Coast, the Office of the Attorney General of Switzerland (OAG) said in a statement on...

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Libra cryptocurrency soldiers on despite key departures

Facebook’s cryptocurrency payments project, Libra, has suffered a major blow with the withdrawal of seven key partners. But the Geneva-based Libra Association continues to battle on against a regulatory onslaught by adopting a charter and forming an executive team.

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Spying scandal weighs on Tidjane Thiam’s tenure at Credit Suisse

When Tidjane Thiam arrived at the helm of Credit Suisse in the summer of 2015, he was a hero. Plucked from the same role at UK insurer Prudential, where he had doubled the share price in six years, he had big plans to shrink the Swiss group’s investment bank, slash costs, raise fresh capital and expand in Asia.

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Unions urge probe on asbestos-linked deaths

Labour unions are demanding a probe of companies’ pre-1990 working conditions in the southern Swiss canton of Ticino, in connection with recent asbestos-linked deaths. They are targeting particularly Swiss Federal Railways and the Swiss accident insurance fund SUVA.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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‘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.

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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.

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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.

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Blockchain for Good faces familiar blockages

Our regular analysis of developments in the world of fintech and Crypto Nation. All eyes were on Libra at the Blockchain 4 Impact summit in Geneva last week. But the Facebook stablecoin project was only one part of a two-day event asking the question: Can blockchain help meet Sustainable Development Goals?

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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.

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