Deposits in Swiss banks by foreign private clients have dropped by 73 billion francs ($92.5) over the course of the last year, according to recent statistics from the Swiss National Bank (SNB).

"/> Deposits in Swiss banks by foreign private clients have dropped by 73 billion francs ($92.5) over the course of the last year, according to recent statistics from the Swiss National Bank (SNB).

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FINANCE

Foreigners deposit less money in Swiss banks

Deposits in Swiss banks by foreign private clients have dropped by 73 billion francs ($92.5) over the course of the last year, according to recent statistics from the Swiss National Bank (SNB).

By the middle of 2011, total assets under management in Swiss banks totalled around 4,253 billion francs. That is 19 billion, or 0.4 percent, less than mid-2010, according to 20 Minuten newspaper.

The fall-off in deposits by international private banking customers accounted for much of the deficit, dropping by 73 billion, or 3.1 percent, to 2,254 billion francs.

An explanation for the dip can likely be found in the relaxation of banking secrecy, as well as Switzerland’s moves to distance itself from money laundering and untaxed funds, 20 Minuten reports.

The total volume of international private client deposits are at their lowest level since 2000 and have dropped significantly since the end of the last bull market in 2007.

In the past year, the volume of international private client deposits decreased from 54.5 to 53 percent. By comparison, in the record year of 2007, international private client deposits made up 58.7 percent of total assets under management.

As a whole, deposits from international private clients in Swiss banks have almost halved since 2007, from 1,042 billion to 577 billion francs. For Swiss private clients, the decrease was much less, dropping barely a fifth from 578 billion to 469 billion francs.

BANK

Credit Suisse slashes jobs, branches to move ‘online’

Credit Suisse, Switzerland's second-biggest bank, said Tuesday it would reorientate its domestic services towards digital banking, with a quarter of its Swiss branches to close and hundreds of jobs at risk.

Credit Suisse slashes jobs, branches to move 'online'
A Credit Suisse branch. Photo: FABRICE COFFRINI / AFP

“In the last two years alone, use of online banking at Credit Suisse has grown by approximately 40 percent, while the use of mobile banking has more than doubled,” the bank said in a statement.

“The COVID-19 crisis has further accelerated these trends. In contrast, the number of visits to branches has been declining for years.

“Credit Suisse will introduce a new digital offering and a future-oriented branch concept at the end of October.”

The bank also plans to merge the activities of regional subsidiary Neue Aargauer Bank with those under the Credit Suisse brand to avoid duplication.

READ: How to open a bank account in Switzerland 

With its realignment, the bank intends to reduce annual costs by around 100 million Swiss francs ($110 million, 93 million euros) from 2022 onwards. It plans to cut the number of bank branches from 146 to 109.

Meanwhile up to 500 jobs could be axed, Andre Helfenstein, head of the bank's operations within Switzerland, told reporters during a conference call.

The restructuring costs are expected to be 75 million Swiss francs. “Digitalisation is happening all around us,” Helfenstein said in a statement.

“The changes we are making to our branch network — while simultaneously investing in digital solutions and in advisory services for clients with more complex needs — represent a logical step forward.”

In late July, the bank's new chief executive Thomas Gottstein unveiled his plans for Credit Suisse, which involved regrouping its different investment bank activities.

Gottstein took charge in February after Tidjane Thiam was ousted over a massive spying scandal.

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