Luxembourg has 'thrown its hat in the ring' to become the new home of the European Banking Authority (EBA) after Brexit and says it has a "legal claim" to host it. Citing a European Union law dating back to 1965, Luxembourg Prime Minister Xavier Bettel made his case in a letter to EU Council President Donald Tusk and European Commission head Jean-Claude Juncker, following the triggering of Article 50. In the past, two exceptions to the decision have been made with the ECB going to Frankfurt and the EBA going to London.
FIFA has sent 1,300 pages of internal investigation reports into suspected bribery and corruption to Switzerland's attorney general. However, the footballl organisation said Friday it was legally barred from publishing the full reports or commenting on the evidence or conclusions. Launched soon after the dramatic arrest of several top officials at a luxury Zurich hotel before the FIFA Congress in May 2015, the 22-month review, conducted by American law firm Quinn Emmanuel and their Swiss counterparts NKF, reviewed more than 2.5 million documents and interviewed dozens of witness before revealing its findings.
The Swiss Federal Government intends to adapt the federal laws on the acquisition of real estate land by persons abroad, known as Lex Koller. It focuses on the possibility that foreign investments - also by individuals immigrating to Switzerland - continue to drive up real estate prices in Switzerland. On March 10, 2017, the goverment opened the consultation process ending on June 30, 2017, by presenting the draft legislation. The two most far reaching proposals have already been rejected by the parliament in 2014.
Authorities in the Netherlands said the probe related to as many as 55,000 suspect accounts held at a Swiss bank, which officials refused to identify however Credit Suisse later released a statement to confirm its involvement in the investigation. The statement did not identify the bank but Credit Suisse's London, Paris and Amsterdam offices were contacted by local authorities over client tax matters, the Zurich-based banks confirmed on Friday, after Dutch prosecutors said they had seized assets and arrested two people in an international hunt for tax evaders, as Financial Times reported in the morning. Credit Suisse spokeswoman Anna Sexton declined to comment further.
Italy has introduced a flat rate of tax aimed at attracting wealthy expats to its shores as it looks to compete with similar regimes offered in the UK and Spain. Similar to the UK’s non-dom system, the new flat rate tax of €100,000 ($107,865) a year, which went live on 8 March, will give foreigners a special status exempting them from paying Italian tax on any offshore income and gains. This charge can also be extended to family members, at a cost of €25,000 per person. The regime is available for up to 15 years, unless the individual fails to pay the charges. A person is considered an Italian resident for tax purposes if they are in the country for more than 183 days, or six months.
Data released on Thursday revealed that the Swiss KOF leading indicator surged slightly over the month of March, reconfirming the strong February data and suggesting a better-than-expected growth of the country's economy. The KOF Swiss Economic Institute reported the KOF index added 0.7 points last month and held strongly above its long-term average, jumping to 107.6 from a downwardly revised reading of 106.9 registered in the preceding month. The upmove was mainly driven by the positive trend established in the construction sector coupled with favourable signals from the financial sector and domestic private consumption.
Amazon founder Jeff Bezos has become the world’s second-richest man adding $1.5 billion to his fortune after Amazon gained $9 billion in market value during trading on Wednesday. The 53-year-old has a net worth of $75.6 billion on the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, and surpassed Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffet ($75.5 billion) and Inditex fashion group chairman Amancio Ortega ($74.1 billion) for the second spot.
The latest Tesla software update brings anticipated new features to Autopilot 2.0 cars, including Summon, which calls your car to you from its parking spot, but it also has a lighter side, as Tesla software updates tend to. Tesla added a new Easter Egg (a goofy software gag generally slightly hidden from view) to its vehicles with the 8.1 update, and this time it’s a sketch pad. The 17-inch touchscreen that dominates the Tesla Model S center panel is basically already a huge digital surface primed for drawing, so it’s a natural add-on – not counting that most of the time you’re going to be using the screen while driving, of course.
Switzerland has started the countdown to a mass-market switch to the ISO 20022 standard for payments harmonisation across all consumer, corporate and bank payments. The digital payments drive will see Swiss financial institutions complete the changeover to the new standard by the end of 2017 and a corporate switch by mid-2018 at the latest. The EU converted its payment traffic to ISO 20022 back in 2014; countries such as Japan and Australia also make use of ISO 20022. During the harmonization process, all the formats, procedures and payment slips that have evolved over time will be aligned with ISO 20022, a proven and future-proof standard.
Nine months after the historic referendum in which the UK population voted to leave the European Union, the UK government has at last served notice to quit. Theresa May yesterday signed the letter that will formally begin the UK’s departure from the European Union, starting a process which will eventually make clear how the country will trade with the EU and the rest of the world. Since the Brexit vote last summer, the UK life sciences sector have been seeking answers as how it can trade and collaborate with Europe, and continue to flourish as a centre for science and innovation.
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