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Tag Archives: Business

Swiss banks implicated in trading cartel investigation

The EU Commissioner for competition policy, Margrethe Vestager. Keystone / Olivier Hoslet The European Commission has ended an investigation of five banks, including UBS and Credit Suisse, who colluded in a foreign exchange spot trading cartel. The total fines announced on Thursday came to €344 million (CHF359 million), with British bank HSBC taking the biggest hit of €174 million. UBS, Switzerland’s biggest bank, escaped a potential fine of €94 million since it...

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Stable income but higher taxes for Swiss households

An average Swiss household spends more than 14% of its gross income on housing and energy. © Keystone/Christian Beutler The average private household in Switzerland spent about 31% of its income on taxes, social security and health insurance premiums in 2019. That’s 1% up on the previous year, slightly reducing the individual budget and the chances of setting money aside. Latest official figures show that the average gross monthly income was CHF9,582 ($10,301) up...

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Geldcast Update: Lessons from interest rate problems

Fabio Canetg The Australian central bank is being attacked by the markets and is losing control over interest rates. Something similar happened to the Swiss National Bank in 2015 with the minimum exchange rate for the euro. But what is behind this? The government should be able to borrow cheaply. That is what the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) promised when the pandemic broke out. It fixed the interest rate on three-year government bonds at 0.1%. Economists call...

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Moving up in the world: could you work from home in the Alps?

Idyllic: Crans-Montana Keystone / Laurent Gillieron During the pandemic, some skiers have been doing just that. But does the romantic vision tally with the reality? It was in May, while hiking along the forest trails and waterfalls of La Tièche, with views towards the snow-dusted peaks of the Matterhorn and Mont Blanc, that fitness coach Jessica Z Christensen decided to spend more time in the Swiss mountains. After a decade of being a digital nomad, the Italian and...

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How the pandemic has widened inequalities in Swiss watchmaking

Audemars Piguet is one of four independent brands that dominate the global luxury watch market. Thomas Kern Driven by strong Chinese demand, Swiss watchmaking is recovering after suffering one of its biggest economic shocks in 2020. But the crisis has further widened the gap between the few brands that take the lion’s share of the profits and the rest of the industry. My specialty is telling stories, and decoding what happens in Switzerland and the world from...

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Call to tap potential of professional working women

Six out of ten women lawyers in Switzerland work part-time. Keystone / Anthony Anex Women make up half of the highly skilled workforce in Switzerland, but work fewer hours, according to a study published on Tuesday. One in three would like to work more, under certain conditions. Women often opt for part-time work, and the liberal professions are no exception, says the studyExternal link carried out by the Sotomo Institute for the Swiss Union of Liberal Professions...

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Google admits defeat in disputed Swiss cloud tender

US technology giant Google argued that it had the capabilities to offer the cloud data services to Switzerland. Keystone / Bernd Von Jutrczenka The Swiss federal authorities can proceed with awarding a cloud computing contract to five US and Chinese companies, including Amazon, Microsoft and Alibaba, after Google dropped an appeal against the decision to leave it out of the project. “The appeal lodged within the framework of the procedure having been withdrawn, the...

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Geneva-Lausanne train link remains suspended

The holes were caused by tunneling work under the tracks carried out by a private company, which was working on a thermal energy project using water from Lake Geneva to heat an industrial zone not far from the train line. Keystone / Jean-christophe Bott The main rail link between Geneva and Lausanne in southwestern Switzerland will not re-open until Friday morning, Swiss Federal Railways (SBB/CFF) has confirmed. The line has been suspended since Tuesday after land...

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Swiss expats thrown limited banking lifeline by digital disruptor

Swiss expats have found it increasingly difficult to get the most basic banking services in recent years. © Keystone / Gaetan Bally Digital bank Yapeal is offering basic accounts to Swiss people living in neighbouring countries that undercut the rising fees of mainstream competitors. Swiss expatriates have long complained that banks in their homeland are giving them a rough deal with extra costs and account closures. Attempts by the Organisation for the Swiss...

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Geldcast Update: Monetary policy and the climate crisis

Fabio Canetg completed his doctorate in monetary policy at the University of Bern and the Toulouse School of Economics. Today he is a lecturer at the University of Bern and hosts the monetary policy podcast “Geldcast”. swissinfo.ch For years, central banks have been called upon to do more to combat climate change. Now a new monetary policy instrument is being discussed as a way forward. The climate strike is back: Last week, thousands of people demonstrated in Bern...

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