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Tag Archives: Editor’s Choice

Short expiry notice for Swiss banknotes sparks criticism

Last Wednesday, the Swiss National Bank (SNB) announced that old Swiss banknotes would no longer be legal tender from Friday, 30 April 2021. The short notice period has generated complaints and confusion. © Marekusz | Dreamstime.comThe eighth series of Swiss banknotes did not lose their value, however, they are no longer an accepted means of exchange. The only places they can still be used are at Swiss Rail and Swiss Post until the end of October 2021. They can however be exchanged at...

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Covid: 13,465 new cases in Switzerland this week

This week, saw 13,465 new Covid-19 cases in Switzerland, down 5% from a week before (14,110) continuing the 5% slow down in growth of new numbers experienced last week. © Andrii Kozlytskyi | Dreamstime.comThe 7-day average is currently 1,924, dipping below the level of 2,000 for the first time since 11 April 2021. By 30 April 2021, 10.8% of Switzerland’s population was fully vaccinated, up from 9.6% a week earlier. This week, the number of doses administered...

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Renters charged fees to view apartments in Geneva

Some agencies in Geneva are exploiting the city’s tight property market by charging people money just to view apartments, according to a report by RTS. © Bogdan Lazar | Dreamstime.comA practice described as parasitic by ASLOCA, a rental association, involves an agency contacting those who have placed adverts for vacant apartments and offering them their services. The agency promises to find tenants at no cost to the advertiser if they take down their advert. It then makes its money by...

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Real Swiss salaries up most in 5 years

On 30 April 2021, Switzerland’s Federal Statistical Office released salary data for 2020 which showed a 1.5% rise in real salaries compared to 2019. © Suwat Supachavinswad | Dreamstime.comIn 2020, a 0.8% rise in nominal salaries was boosted by inflation of -0.7% bringing the total increase in the real average Swiss salary to 1.5%. The last time salaries rose this much was in 2015 when the real increase was 1.5%. In both 2015 and 2020 negative inflation of -1.1% and -0.7% significantly...

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Old Swiss money no longer valid from Friday

From Friday 30 April 2021, old Swiss bank notes will no longer be legal tender. This means they can no longer be used as a valid means of payment. © Jean-michel Feinen | Dreamstime.comThe notes affected are old 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 and 1,000 Swiss franc notes. From 30 April 2021, the only places that will accept these notes are Swiss Rail and Swiss Post, who will accept them until 30 October 2021. After 30 October 2021, the only places that will accept these notes are the cash desks...

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Covid: the 3 phases of Switzerland’s return to normal

This week, Switzerland’s government set out the three phases of its plan to return to normal at a press conference recorded by RTS. The first is the protection phase, which we are currently in. This involves vaccinating the vulnerable and could last until the end of May 2021. The second is the stabilisation phase. This involves vaccinating all adults who want the shot. At this point bars could begin to open and larger events could be allowed with access limited to...

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Only 36% of Swiss own their homes

Recently published statistics show that 36% of homes are owned by those who live in them, a rate that falls to 12% in municipalities with more than 100,000 residents. Lausanne © Ocskay Mark | Dreamstime.comSwiss municipalities with the highest rates of home ownership (37%) have between 10,000 and 15,000 residents, a rate exceeding the smallest municipalities of less than 10,000 residents (31%). At a cantonal level, the cantons with the lowest rates of home ownership were Geneva...

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Covid: 80 percent of nation must be immunised to stop spread, says Swiss health minister

© Filmfoto | Dreamstime.com This week, Alain Berset, Switzerland’s health minister said that 80% of the population must be immunised for the virus to stop spreading, according to RTS. Vaccination against the SARS-CoV-2 virus is voluntary in Switzerland. Currently, estimates suggest only 60% of Switzerland’s population is prepared to be vaccinated, according to Berset, a figure below the level required to get rid of the virus. If 60% had immunity the virus would still...

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Health insurers encouraged to use reserves to cut or repay premiums

In 2020, total reserves held by Swiss health insurance companies reached CHF 11.3 billion, a level equivalent to 203% of the minimum required, according to RTS. © Andrey Popov | Dreamstime.comExcess reserves jumped recently after the government cut the minimum reserve level by one third, part of a move designed to encourage health insurers to align premiums more closely with costs. The government wants to reduce the chance of insurance companies dipping into reserves to support the...

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Switzerland books a federal deficit of 14 billion francs in 2020

On 14 April 2021, Switzerland’s federal government announced it had spent CHF 14.2 billion more that it had collected in revenue in 2020. © Marekusz | Dreamstime.comThe loss represents the federal government’s consolidated excess expenditure for the year and is linked to the consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic, according to the statement. An additional CHF 16.8 billion was spent as a result of the pandemic. Consolidated accounts include the results of companies linked to the...

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