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Tag Archives: Personal finance

Health care cost brake initiative to go to a vote

This week, a government proposal presented as an alternative to a referendum aimed at limiting healthcare costs was rejected by initiative organisers. This means the question will be put to voters. © Alexey Novikov | Dreamstime.comThe initiative, which is supported by the Centre Party, would require actors in the healthcare system to agree on cost-cutting measures if healthcare costs grow significantly faster than wages and the economy – cost growth more than 20% higher than the nominal...

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One in ten Swiss worried about money at the end of the month

A study published this week by the Federal Statistical Office (FSO) shows nearly 1 in 10 (9.9%) people in Switzerland has trouble making their money last until the end of the month. And, 4.9% had to go without goods, services or social activities due to a lack of money. The study is a European comparison of life satisfaction and draws on data from 2022. Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.comDespite the financial challenges faced by some, Switzerland had the highest average life...

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No price rises for Swiss public transport in 2025

Alliance Swisspass, an organisation that stitches together Switzerland’s various public transport providers to create tickets and passes that work across the network, announced this week that there would be no ticket price increases in 2025, reported SRF. © Woj231 | Dreamstime.comA recent rise in the number of people using the network is bringing in more revenue. This is helping to reduce the need to raise prices, said the organisation. In addition, Alliance Swisspass said that the sector...

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Higher Swiss pensions to be funded with higher tax

On 3 March 2024, a majority of Swiss voters accepted a plan to increase the state pension by 1/12th (8.3%) – an extra 13th month of pension will be paid from 2026. Organisers of the vote claimed pension finances were in good shape, implying there was money to fund it. However, there wasn’t. This week the Federal Council presented a plan to raise taxes to pay for the increase, reported RTS. Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.comSwiss state pension funding currently looks fine. There are...

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Some relief on Swiss electricity bills in pipeline

When we pay electricity bills we also have to pay for the infrastructure that brings it to our homes. Part of this infrastructure is run by Swissgrid. On 20 March 2024, Swissgrid announced a cut in what it charges from 2025. Photo by Pok Rie on Pexels.comIn 2025, a household with an annual consumption of 4,500 kWh will pay an average of CHF 77 (-16%) for the services provided by Swissgrid instead of the CHF 92 it will pay in 2024. These charges corresponds to 5% of the total bill. So a...

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Swiss National Bank surprises with interest rate cut

On 21 March 2024, the Swiss National Bank (SNB) lowered its key interest rate from 1.75% to 1.5%. © J0hnb0y | Dreamstime.comThe move makes the SNB the first significant central bank to lower rates as inflation slows. The cut surprised many analysts and economists. The consensus expectation was for no change in the rate. Many other central banks have left rates unchanged. On 20 March 2024, the US Fed decided to maintain the target range for the federal funds rate at 5.25% to 5.5%. And...

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Over half of Swiss families struggling to make ends meet

A survey published this week by the organisation Pro Familia shows that 52% of families across Switzerland are struggling to make ends meet. Photo by Vika Glitter on Pexels.comFor many families in Switzerland, money is tight or insufficient to cover all living expenses. The percentage finding themselves in this position rose from 47% to 52%. The rising cost of health insurance was the biggest challenge cited by most of those surveyed. Regarding saving, 30% said they were unable to save...

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New weight loss drugs likely to push up premiums

Since the beginning of March, Swiss health insurance companies have been covering the cost of Wegovy, a weight loss product, reported SRF. © Oleschwander | Dreamstime.comPreviously, Ozempic, a drug also used by diabetics, was being prescribed for weight loss. Going forward, it is expected that the drugs Wegovy and Saxenda will be prescribed for weight loss instead of Ozempic. This should relieve drug shortages for diabetics – people seeking Ozempic for weight loss have made it difficult...

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Child welfare set to be cut to help pension funding

This week, Switzerland’s parliament voted to eliminate child support payments paid to pensioners, reported SRF. Photo by RDNE Stock project on Pexels.comIn Switzerland, parents typically receive payments for every child that is at school or in higher education up to a maximum age of 25. For most, the payments are connected with employment and funded out of the social security taxes deducted from salaries. However, if someone becomes a parent in their 40s they could end up a pensioner...

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Church tax – should Swiss companies be forced to pay?

Individuals can opt out of church tax in most cantons. But companies rarely can, despite many having no connection with a church or a religion. The topic has been a hot political subject for a long time in Switzerland and came back under the spotlight this week when the canton of Bern discussed making it optional, reported SRF. © Nuvisage | Dreamstime.comIn 2021, the canton of Bern collected CHF 37 million in church tax from companies, so a change in rules would be felt. A key...

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