The International Bank Note Society (IBNS) announces that its voting membership has selected the Swiss National Bank to receive its prestigious “Bank Note of the Year Award” for 2016. With almost 120 new banknotes released worldwide during 2016, over half were of sufficiently new design to be eligible for nomination. The Swiss note only narrowly beat the Maldive Islands 1000 Rufiyaa bill, Argentina’s 500 Peso jaguar, and the Royal Bank of Scotland’s 5 Pound first polymer note.
Last year, Swiss nominal wages recorded an average increase of 0.7% over 2015. For the fifth consecutive year, the increase remained below the 1% threshold. In majority, the economic sectors marked a real increase in wages favored by 0.4% negative inflation. By comparison, the wages increases, negotiated in 2016 by the main labor organizations, referred to almost half a million employees, was 0.4%.
Russia has offered Switzerland to sign an agreement in collaboration in the sphere of customs, Ruslan Davydov, first deputy director of Russia’s Federal Customs Service told TASS on Saturday, on the sidelines of a conference of the World Customs Organization, which took place in Vienna on April 19-21. The event was attended by representatives of 51 nations and the EU. Russia has become a member of WCO in 1992, as a legal successor to the USSR.
Switzerland's central bank posted a profit of 7.9 billion Swiss francs ($7.95 billion) in the first quarter, it said Thursday, boosted by gains from the huge foreign currency reserves built up during its long campaign to weaken the Swiss franc. The Swiss National Bank made a profit of 5.3 billion francs on its foreign currency holdings that rose to 683.18 billion francs at the end of March, a figure larger than Swiss GDP. The bank also made a profit of 2.2 billion francs from a valuation gain on the gold it holds, and 466.4 million francs from negative interest rates it has charged on the sight deposit accounts it holds for commercial banks. The SNB is not required to make a profit, with its main mandate to ensure price stability in Switzerland defined as annual inflation of under 2 percent. But a portion of any profit it does make is distributed to the Swiss government and the country's 26 cantons.
UBS delivered very strong first-quarter results with an adjusted profit before tax of CHF 1,934m, up 42% year on year. Adjusted operating income increased 8%, driven by the Investment Bank, Wealth Management Americas and Wealth Management, and the firm continued to make progress on its net cost reduction program. Despite facing a variety of market conditions and client activity levels, all business divisions and regions contributed to the improvement in performance. Reported pre-tax profit was up 73% year on year to CHF 1,690m. Net profit attributable to shareholders was CHF 1,269m, up 79% year on year, with diluted earnings per share of CHF 0.33. Group annualized adjusted1 return on tangible equity was 12.6%, or 17.4% excluding DTA.
Reporters Without Borders (RWB) released its annual 2017 World Press Freedom Index which revealed Switzerland is still one of the world's top ten countries. The annual Index is produced by Reporters without Borders (RWB), a French-based, international non-profit organization. The Index underlined the Swiss government’s current debate over the mandate of the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SRG-SSR) and the future of Billag, the licence paid by the public. A potential 2018 referendum could see the end of Billag and therefore the end of SRG-SSR, it said.
Switzerland's private consumption growth continued to remain around its long-term average, survey data from the UBS investment bank showed Wednesday. The UBS Consumption Indicator stood at 1.50 in March, and the February figure was revised downwards slightly to 1.45. Following strong growth at the beginning of the year (5.5%), domestic tourism fell by 0.8% in February compared with the same month in the previous year. Consumption was driven by solid automotive demand: new car registrations grew 4.8%.
Airbitz, a San Diego-based bitcoin wallet and data security company, has announced a partnership with Bity, a Swiss bitcoin exchange that allows users to buy and sell cryptocurrencies with Euros and Swiss Francs. Bity will be a plug-in application inside the Airbitz Wallet allowing Airbitz users to buy and sell bitcoin with Euros and Swiss Francs. Airbitz has only had buy/sell bitcoin capabilities for its users with US bank accounts but this plug-in allows those with European bank accounts to buy through the Airbitz Wallet easily, cheaply, and securely.
Credit Suisse has just reported first quarter earnings which show Switzerland's second-largest bank beating expectations, helped by a strong performance across the board. The bank simultaneously announced its intention to pursue a 4 billion swiss franc ($4 billion) capital raise. It said the first quarter had provided "further confirmation" that it was delivering "profitable and complaint growth" and had "generated positive momentum across our businesses".
Swiss pharmaceuticals group Novartis says net income fell 15 percent in the first quarter, as it continued to adjust to generic competition for its Gleevec leukemia drug and stopped work on a hoped-for treatment for heart failure. The Basel-based company said net income dropped to $1.7 billion in the quarter, compared to $2.01 in the year-earlier period. It cited a $200 million charge to discontinue RLX030, which failed to pass tests in trials as a treatment for acute heart failure.
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The Responsible Finance Institute (RFI) Foundation and the Swiss Arab Network organize the RFI Summi
FinLantern is glad to invite you to a “Sustainable Apero”
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