1. Compendium Edition 2004
The Swiss Banking Sector
This compendium aims to provide an overview of structures, processes
and institutions in the Swiss banking and financial centre. In our
activity report (www.swissbanking.org) we provide comprehensive
information about the key events of the past year. In the compendium
we focus primarily on the global structures and institutions of the
banking sector and their development, and we only address those
events of the past two years which were relevant to these issues.
The compendium is intended for readers outside the industry who
seek to gain a general understanding of the banking sector, as well as
professional bankers with an interest in obtaining accurate informa-
tion on a specific subject. The compendium may also serve as sup-
port literature for university level lectures and as a general reference.
The 2004 edition is an expanded update of the 2001 version. The
compendium is updated bi-annually.
The author looks forward to receiving your comments and sugges-
tions on his e-mail address: email@example.com.
Basel, October 2003
Swiss Bankers Association
PO Box 4182
Page 2 Preamble
6 Index of Acronyms
Economic Function of the Financial System
8 Allocation of Funds
9 Allocation of Risks
9 Supply of Liquidity
9 Information and Monitoring
10 Difference Between Banks and Industrial Companies
Banks in the Overall Economy
High Output and Productivity
12 Important Employer, Above-Average Salaries
12 An Important Taxpayer
12 Asset Management is a Core Competence
Development of Select Business Areas
Lending Business –
Profitable and Crucial to the Economy
15 Investment Funds
15 Self-Regulation in Fund Business
16 Mortgage Business
16 Mortgage Business in a Process of Change
17 Investment Banking
18 Swiss Interbank Clearing AG
4. 18 Swiss Euro Clearing Bank
19 Continuous Linked Settlement (CLS)
19 Investment Advice and Asset Management
20 Safe Custody of Securities and Valuables
21 Global Custody
21 Draft for a Securities Custody Act
22 Fiduciary Business
22 Derivative Financial Instruments
Economic Challenges for the Banks
Additional Synergy and Savings Potential Exists
24 The Choice of Business Model is Decisive
25 New Challenges in Wealth Management
26 Continued Success Thanks to Standardisation and Disintegration
Supervision and Regulation of Banks
The Federal Banking Commission (FBC)
27 Banking Regulation: Purpose and Basis
28 Reform of Financial Market Regulation
29 Banks, Banking Commission and Auditors
29 Impeccable Business Conduct as Requirement for Banking Licence
29 Auditors as Instruments of the FBC
30 Reform of Bank Audit
30 Business Activity Requirements
31 New Basel Capital Accord (Basel II)
31 Risk Monitoring
32 Depositor Protection
32 Amendment of the Bank Insolvency Law
33 Amendment of the Depositor Protection Agreement
33 Annual Statement and Balance Sheets
34 FBC Guidelines on Accounting Regulations (FBC GAR)
34 Self-Regulation and Code of Conduct
34 Code of Conduct with Regard to the Exercise of Due Diligence (CDB 03)
35 Swiss Banking Ombudsman
36 International Co-Operation among Supervisory Authorities
36 Administrative Co-Operation and In Situ Monitoring
37 Consolidated Supervision
37 Bank Customer Confidentiality
38 Swiss Tax System
38 Direct Withholding Tax as a Correlation
38 Taxation of Savings Interest Earnings in the EU,
Tax Retention in Switzerland
39 Anti-Money Laundering Measures
39 Public Law and Penal Code
40 International Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters
The Banks’ Joint Organisations
Position and Significance of the Joint Organisations
42 Swiss Financial Services Group AG (SIS)
42 SIS SegaInterSettle AG
42 SIS x-clear AG
42 Telekurs Group
43 Telekurs Multipay AG
43 Telekurs Card Solutions AG
43 Swiss Interbank Clearing
43 PayNet (Schweiz) AG
43 Telekurs Financial AG
43 Telekurs Services AG
43 Stock Exchanges
44 SWX Swiss Exchange
44 Swiss Value Chain
45 SWX Group
The Swiss National Bank
The Monetary Concept
47 Monetary Control
47 Repurchase Agreements
48 Other Duties of the SNB
48 Cash Supply
48 Non-Cash Payment Transactions
49 Creating Currency Reserves
49 Monitoring of the System Stability
49 International Co-Operation
49 Advisor and Banker to the Federal Government
SwissBanking – The Swiss Bankers Association
Safeguarding Interests and Self-Regulation as Primary Objectives
50 Membership List Includes Auditors and Securities Traders
51 General Assembly, Board of Directors and Office
Categories of Banks
Categories of Banks as per SNB Banking Statistics
52 The Cantonal Banks
53 The Big Banks
53 Regional Banks
54 Raiffeisen Banks
54 Private Bankers
55 Other Banks
55 Non-Bank Financial Intermediaries
56 Selection of Basic and Advanced Literature
59 Internet Addresses
6. Index of Acronyms
SBL Federal Act on Banks and Savings Banks (Swiss Banking Law)
SESTA Federal Act on Stock Exchanges and Securities Trading
FSO Federal Statistics Office
BIS Bank for International Settlement
CBOT Chicago Board of Trade
CHF Swiss franc
CS Credit Suisse
i.e. that is (id est)
FBC Swiss Federal Banking Commission
EU European Union
EUREX EURopean EXchange
ECB European Central Bank
f./ff. Following page/following pages (folio/folios)
FATF Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering
GAAP Generally Accepted Accounting Standards
MLA Federal Act on the Prevention of Money Laundering
in the Financial Sector
7. Psr. Publisher
IAS International Accounting Standards
Intersettle Swiss Corporation for International Securities Settlements
SME Small and Medium-sized Enterprises
DD Direct Debit
MROS Money Laundering Reporting Office Switzerland
Nasdaq National association of securities dealers automated quotation system
NYSE New York Stock Exchange
p.a. for the year, annual (per annum)
Repo Repurchase Agreement
CR Circular (FBC)
SBA Swiss Bankers Association
FDCB Federal Act on Debt Collection and Bankruptcy
SEC Securities and Exchange Commission
SECB Swiss Euro Clearing Bank GmbH Frankfurt
SECOM SEga COMmunication System
SFS Swiss Financial Service Group
SIC Swiss Interbank Clearing
SIS SegaInterSettle AG
SNB Swiss National Bank
SPC Swiss Penal Code
SWX SWiss eXchange (Swiss stock exchange)
TARGET Trans European Automated
i.a. including, among other things (inter alia)
CDB Agreement on the Swiss banks’ code of conduct
with regard to the exercise of due diligence
e.g. for example (exempli gratia)
8. 1 Economic Function of
the Financial System
All financial business is conducted on the basis of contracts. These
agreements form the basis of and regulate the exchange of payments
at different intervals between two or more parties. The lender makes
cash or cash-like equivalents available to the borrower on a given
day and receives a promise from the borrower that he or she will
repay the loan in the future. This voluntary exchange has advan-
tages for both sides: the borrower has the opportunity to make pur-
chases or investments which he or she would otherwise have to post-
pone or abandon altogether; to obtain this advantage, the borrower
is prepared to pay an interest on the capital borrowed. In return, the
interest payment compensates the lender for agreeing not to use his
or her funds immediately.
Allocation of Funds
Investment capital is always limited. Consequently, a selection of
projects to be considered is necessary. The decision is driven primarily
by the price: the advantage is with the borrowers who are willing
and able to pay the prevailing market rate of interest. Thus the
decision depends on the expected return on the investment to be
financed. At this initial stage, any possible risk to the lender is
abstracted. The very existence of such risk means that we need to
check and monitor (see below).
9. Allocation of Risks
The risks (and opportunities) are distributed differently for bank
loans and private equity financing.
Different levels of risk and opportunity are inherent in bank loans
and private equity financing. In the case of a bank loan, the lender
has a legal right to claim repayment and interest irrespective of the
success of the project to be financed. However, in practice, the bor-
rower may be unwilling (lack of repayment discipline) or unable
(lack of credit worthiness) to meet his liabilities. In the case of private
equity financing, the lender participates in the success or failure of the
Individual risks can be eliminated by the law of large numbers;
systematic risk cannot. Conservative lenders will only assume such
risk if they receive compensation in the form of a risk premium. The
rapid development of financial derivatives
has rounded out the market system: using Lenders will only assume
derivatives, risks can often be isolated more risk if they receive com-
accurately and thus transferred; as a result pensation in the form of
the opportunities for risk allocation have
increased. Derivatives are based on various
a risk premium.
combinations of three basic types of financial contract: forwards/-
futures, swaps and options. Depending on the underlying instruments,
a distinction is made between rate, currency and index derivatives.
Supply of Liquidity
Liquidity describes the ability to settle a payment commitment on
time. An asset is deemed liquid if it can be sold, and thus converted
into legal tender (money), at any time in any volume, without a price
loss vis-à-vis the market rate. Banks help their customers to cover
themselves against the risk of unexpected funding requirements.
This is one of the reasons why secondary markets exist. An asset’s
level of liquidity also depends on the market in which it is traded, as
well as the system of that market and the quality and reliability of
information about the product (asymmetric information may be an
indication for non-liquidity).
Information and Monitoring
The borrower is usually better informed than the lender on the risks
and opportunities of the project the latter finances (asymmetric
information). This means the borrower is in a position to influence
the chances of success of the investment through his or her action
(behavioural risk). After all, the loan he or she has promised to
repay is equally dependent on the occurrence of random events (e.g.
There are various ways for the lender to hedge against these risks:
he or she can procure additional information about the borrower
ex ante (creditworthiness check, financial analysis), continuously
monitor his or her exposure, demand equity and collateral from the
borrower in order to cover his or her secondary liability and, finally,
demand compensation for the risk incurred in the form of a premi-
10. um on the rate of interest. Financial intermediation is another source
of information part of which is made available to the public (e.g.
when a company is admitted to the stock exchange).
Banks and Industrial Companies
In contrast to industrial companies, banks do not provide physical
goods but services. These consist of liquidity, information and trans-
formation services (see above) The credit risk of a bank corresponds
to the investment risk of a company; the liquidity risk corresponds
to the capital structure risk. The bank is also subject to interest rate
risk (due to maturity transformation, a bank risks having to refinance
its long-term loans at rates which exceed the rate of interest on the
loan if the interest rate structure changes). The insolvency of a bank
can have a significant external impact on the overall economy;
potentially more serious than if an industrial company were to go
bankrupt. If, for example, there is a run on a bank, there might be a
chain reaction, resulting in the collapse of other banks (systemic risk).
Because of this danger, banks are generally more heavily regulated
than industrial concerns.
11. 2 Banks in the Overall
High Output and Productivity
With a net output of almost CHF 57bn or 14% of gross domestic
product, the financial sector was among the key sectors in Switzerland
again in 2002.
Banks contributed CHF 44.4 bn to the real net output, which corre-
sponds to 11% of GDP. Insurances contributed CHF 11 bn or 2.7%
of GDP and other financial services companies CHF 1.2 bn or 0.3%
1 These figures vary
200,000 employees work in the financial sector – i.e. 5.3% of the
total workforce, of which 3.3% work for banks, 1.7% for insurance on the source; we
companies and 0.3% for other financial intermediaries. 1 use the data provid-
ed by BAK Basel
The importance of the banking sector in Switzerland is also very these data differ
high by international standards, its contribution to the overall net marginally from
those provided by
output being around twice the size of banks in Germany, France or the Federal Statis-
the USA. tics Office (FSO).
In relation to other businesses, labour productivity (real net output
divided by the number of employees) in the financial sector is above
average. 5.3% of the total work force work in the financial sector
and deliver 14% of the overall net output, in other words – the pro-
ductivity per employee is about triple the average.
12. The Financial Sector and Other Important Industries in 2002
Percentage Percentage Labour productivity *
of workforce net output nominal
Financial Sector 5.3 14 264
Banks 3.3 11 333
Insurance 1.7 2.7 159
Other 0.3 0.3 100
Commerce 16.4 11.4 70
Hotels and Restaurants 5.8 3 52
Construction 7.3 5.2 71
Equipment 8 8.1 101
Pharmaceutical Industry 1.6 3.3 206
Food and Beverages 1.6 1.7 106
* average = 100
Source: BAK CH-Plus, April 2003
Real productivity per hour (real net output divided by total number
of man-hours worked) narrowed by around 10% over the past two
years. Calculations by BAK Basel Economics show that this decline
has been a result of a 5 per cent decline in real net output combined
with an increase of man-hours worked by 5 per cent. The latter indi-
cates that the unfavourable market conditions took the banks by
surprise and the banks therefore failed to reduce their staff in pace
with the declining net output.
Important Employer, Above-Average Salaries
Around 200,000 people are employed in the financial sector, more
than half of them work for banks and almost half of the bank staff
are employed with the big banks. More than
Around 200,000 people half of all insurance staff work for accident and
work in the financial damage insurances, followed by life insurances
sector, more than half which employs around one-eighth of all insur-
of them in banks.
In the year 2000, the median monthly gross salary in the banking
sector was CHF 7,190, thus exceeding the Swiss median by about
one-third (as the distribution is skewed right, the arithmetic mean
should be somewhat higher). The respective figure in the insurance
business was CHF 6,505 and in other financial services companies
CHF 6,937. These figures reflect, i.a., the high level of labour pro-
An Important Taxpayer
Banks are one of the most important taxpayers in Switzerland. The
total sum of taxes paid annually by banks, their employees and
shareholders amounts to CHF 13 bn (including withholding tax and
stamp duty) which represents more than 13% of the total federal,
cantonal and municipal tax revenues.
Asset Management is a Core Competence
Banks make a significant contribution to Switzerland’s prosperity.
The asset management business is particularly important, as it gen-
erates more than half of the banks’ combined net output, and more
than 80% of that is achieved with private customers. Swiss banks
13. are global leaders in cross-border asset management (i.e. with cus-
tomers domiciled abroad) with a relevant world market share of
At the end of 2002, security assets held in customer accounts with
domestic banks (parent bank without foreign branches), fell by 13%
from the previous year to CHF 2,945 bn. This decline was mainly
due to the weaker valuation of stocks. 47% of total deposits were
held by institutional investors, 42% by private customers and 11%
by corporate customers. 56% of all securities were held by foreign
investors, and 47% of all securities were denominated in Swiss
Securities Holdings in Customer Accounts with Domestic Banks
Year* All customers Foreign customers Domestic customers Allocation in CHF
CHF bn. in % (by all customers)
1999 3,438 1,847 1,591 –
2000 3,717 2,056 1,661 49
2001 3,400 1,901 1,498 47
2002 2,945 1,659 1,286 47
* at year end
Source: Swiss National Bank
Last but not least, the comparatively low rate of interest in Switzer-
land is a direct consequence of this strong market position in asset
management and has advantages for the country’s entire economy.
Such low interest rates represent a significant competitive advantage
at the international level, which primarily benefits the Swiss labour
14. 3 Development of
Select Business Areas
Lending Business – Profitable and
Crucial to the Economy
Traditional loans are of great importance to the economy. The
domestic market for construction loans amounts to about CHF 600
bn., of which 60% are attributed to private households, 30% to
businesses and 10% to other financial services companies and the
public sector. With a share of 78%, mortgages are the predominant
form of lending. Bank loans are a major, if not the single, source of
outside financing for many companies, especially small and medi-
um-sized businesses (SME).
The profitability and sustainability of an individual bank’s loan
business depends to a large extent on the implementation of an ade-
quate risk policy by the bank. In compensa-
The profitability and tion for its risk, the lending bank has the
sustainability of a bank’s right to claim a form of risk premium, i.e. a
loan business depends commensurate rate of interest and appropri-
to a large extent on its risk ate lending terms. Supervision and regula-
tion, including rules on equity and liquidity,
policy. are crucial in this context.
The Swiss National Bank’s stability-oriented monetary policy materi-
ally supports the banks in defining their risk policy and establishing
terms and interest rates. The guiding principle is to use a reliable
monetary policy to contain inflationary expectations. The ultimate
objective is to preserve Switzerland’s autonomy in terms of interest
rate policy and thus enable the banks to supply the market with
15. The banks’ retail business, particularly loans to SME, remains very
important. Private and business loans as well as mortgage lending
continue to be vital to vast parts of the banking sector.
Investment funds consist of assets which the fund management solicits
publicly from investors for the purpose of collective investment. The
fund management manages these assets usually on the principle of
risk diversification on behalf of the investors.
The fund management company acts on the basis of a collective
investment agreement, managing the investment fund independently
and in its own name for the account of the investors. It makes deci-
sions about purchase and sale of investments, keeps the accounts
and publishes the financial statements for the investment funds. The
fund management company has to represent the interests of the
investors. In most cases, fund management firms are subsidiary com-
panies of banks. As an independent legal entity, the fund assets are
classed as preferential debt: if the bank or fund management
declares bankruptcy, these assets are excluded from the bankruptcy
A manager of a Swiss investment fund as well as the custodian bank
where the fund assets are held, both need to be licensed by the FBC.
Furthermore, the fund prospectus, issued jointly by the fund man-
agement company and the custodian bank, is subject to FBC appro-
val. The fund management as well as the
investment fund are supervised by the FBC
Switzerland ranks ninth
and audited by an independent auditing worldwide in terms
firm which is recognised by the FBC. Pro- of fund assets under
fessional fund distributors also require an management.
The investment fund business is significant domestically as well as
by international comparison. In terms of volume of fund assets
under management, Switzerland ranks ninth worldwide. Banks con-
tinuously expand their investment fund services. Above and beyond
the mere investment funds range, this applies also to related services
such as fund portfolios, fund accounts or fund savings schemes.
Self-Regulation in Fund Business
To promote self-regulation, the Swiss Funds Association (SFA) has
drawn up the following rules of professional ethics to supplement
existing legal provisions:
– Code of conduct for the Swiss fund industry (30th August, 2000). In
effect since 1st January 2001, the Code of Conduct specifies minimum
standards in terms of the fund management companies’ duty to exer-
cise due diligence, act in good faith and provide fair information.
– Guidelines on the calculation of net asset values and the handling of
valuation errors in the case of securities funds (11th June, 2001)
– Guidelines on fund distribution, including provisions for fund dis-
tributors (22nd October 2001, in effect since middle of 2002).
– Guidelines on the calculation and disclosure of the Total-Expense-
Ratio (TER), approved by the FBC in June 2003
16. Funds have to publish their TER for the first time in their annual or
semi-annual financial statements closing as from end of 2003. The
TER expresses the costs and commissions charged to a fund’s assets
as a percentage of the fund assets. In the past, many investment
funds reported only their management and subscription fees. The
TER includes also costs charged to the fund assets on an ongoing
basis such as expenses covering the production of the annual and
semi-annual financial statements, communication to investors,
auditing fees and fees for supervision of the fund. Some banks go
beyond these requirements and report not only the TER of their
funds, but also the all-in fee. The latter includes all expenses related
to the fund management company and the management of the
investments. Excluded are only foreign stamp duty and costs
incurred on the purchase or sale of investments outside Switzerland.
Switzerland has a substantial mortgage lending market. The average
of mortgage lending per capita amounts to CHF 72,000 (by compari-
son, average bank savings amount to CHF 44,000 per capita). Mort-
gage loans are not only provided by banks, but also by insurance
companies, pension funds, public institu-
The continuous growth in tions, private enterprises and private indi-
mortgage lending is an viduals. Banks command a market share of
important growth factor for about 85%. Although other forms of loan
the construction industries. shrank over the period from 1998 to 2002
by 1.1% p.a., the volume of mortgage
loans provided by banks grew during the same period by an average
of 2.1% p.a. The continuous growth in mortgage lending is an
important growth factor for the primary and secondary construction
industries (the secondary construction industry includes plumbing,
Mortgage Business in a Process of Change
Over the past ten years, banks have introduced a large variety
of new mortgage types, and the variety of mortgage types continues
to expand. With these new products, banks offer their customers
customised financing solutions to a much greater extent than in the
past. Fixed-rate mortgages account for more than half of the new
mortgages in the present day. The interest rate on such mortgages is
fixed and remains non-variable for a period agreed between the
bank and its customer (usually two to five years). The number of
money market mortgages is also growing rapidly. Banks refinance
this type of mortgages in the Euromarket and charge the variable
refinancing cost to their customers. This enables the banks to bor-
row close to the market and at matched maturities. Most banks have
ceased to offer the traditional variable mortgage with its inherent
lack of pricing transparency, or they might only do so on specific
Mortgage pricing is being based increasingly on a single interest rate
(instead of the dual interest rates for first and second mortgages).
The single interest rate correlates to the loan-to-value ratio and the
borrowers’ credit. The customer benefits from a more transparent
pricing structure and is in a position to take individual precautions
against general interest rate fluctuations. By fixing the mortgage for
17. a certain period, the customer can avoid the effects of interest rate
fluctuations completely. In the case of currently inexpensive money
market mortgages, the banks offer instruments for minimising the
effects of interest rate fluctuation or fixing the maximum mortgage
Mortgage Debt in Switzerland
in CHF bn.
Creditor 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002
Banks 488 501 506 522 541
Insurance companies 31 31 32 32 –
Pension funds 26 26 25 25 –
Federal government 3 3 3 3 3
Total 548 561 566 525 –
Source: SNB. Die Banken in der Schweiz 2002, S. 47
Asset securitisation, i.e. the substitution of loans for marketable
securities, is gaining in importance with regard to the mortgage busi-
ness. In this process, the bank sells part of its loan claims to a com-
pany that is established specifically for this purpose and which refi-
nances itself by issuing asset-backed securities (ABS).
Asset securitisation was first applied in the USA in the 1970s and
spread on a wider scale in the 1990s. In the USA the volume multi-
plied from USD 400 bn to more than USD 2,000 bn between 1991
and 2001. At USD 300 bn, the volume was clearly lower in Europe
in 2001. In 1998, the former Swiss Bank Corporation was the first
bank in Switzerland to securitise domestic mortgage loans. The next
transaction was carried out in 2001 by the ZKB and is described in
detail below, as a model transaction. It remains to be seen whether
ABS will establish itself in Switzerland as it has in the USA or some
parts of Europe. Major banks in Switzerland are at any rate showing
efforts to acquire the skills and competence necessary for engaging
in ABS transactions on a larger scale.
Investment Banking essentially consists of new issues, securities and
currency trading, money market and treasury business as well as
mergers & acquisitions consulting for large companies. These services
require particularly specialised know-how on the one hand, but gen-
erate a strong output on the other hand.
Nowadays, it is no longer possible to look at investment banking
form the perspective of a single financial centre. In other words, it is
a highly globalised business operating 24 hours a day. Most services
are now provided mainly out of only one
very large financial centre per time zone; Investment banking is a
this is the financial centre with a market highly globalised busi-
size and concentration of customers suffi- ness operating 24 hours
cient to accommodate an adequately spe-
cialised community of service providers, and
with a dynamic labour market for a large number of indispensable
specialists (e.g. corporate finance specialists, lawyers). London is
currently the undisputed investment banking centre in Europe. The
Swiss domestic market for investment banking services is relatively
18. Providers of investment banking services typically have a global
structure. This enables banks to form bespoke groups of specialists
and expert teams to deal with individual transactions on a world-
wide level as and when required. Networking, i.e. the simultaneous
availability of various resources, is at the heart of such operations
and crucial to success. Therefore, fairly large corporate size is typical
for businesses engaging in investment banking.
Asset securitisation plays a special role in investment banking.
Several banks have already securitised mortgages, for instance.
These transactions are normally complex in financial as well as
legal terms and the costs are still quite high. Consequently, the
profitability of a securitisation transaction still depends on the vol-
ume of critical mass.
Swiss Interbank Clearing AG
Swiss Interbank Clearing AG operates the interbank payments system
in Swiss francs (SIC). sic is a real-time gross settlement system which
processes payments online via the participants’ giro accounts with
the SNB. Swiss Post has also been settling its money market trans-
actions through SIC since November 2000. The SNB supervises and
controls the flow of funds. More than 700,000 payments a day with
a daily turnover of around CHF 180 bn were processed in 2002. At
the end of 2002, 329 banks were members of SIC.
Until 1997, access to SIC was restricted to banks domiciled in
Switzerland. Since 1998, the SNB has been granting remote SIC
access to international joint organisations and clearing organisa-
tions as well as their bank members. 81 banks outside Switzerland
are currently using SIC.
Since the end of 2002, PostFinance has been holding 25% of shares
in Swiss Interbank Clearing Ltd. as a member. This participation
strengthens the existing cooperation between PostFinance and the
Swiss Euro Clearing Bank
EuroSIC, the clearing system for euro denominated payments in
Switzerland and abroad, processed more than 1.6 million payments
in 2002, 650,000 of which were cross-border payments. In terms of
number of transactions, euroSIC ranks sixth among the 16 clearing
systems connected to TARGET. As per end of December 2002, 122
financial institutions were connected to euroSIC.
The SECB controls and supervises euroSIC. As a special-purpose
bank, the SECB is exclusively in charge of euro denominated pay-
ments. Furthermore, it provides all cash and collateral management
services related thereto. Via SECB, euroSIC is connected to the Ger-
man euro clearing systems EAF (Euro Access Frankfurt) and ELS
(Euro Linking Settlement), as well as to TARGET via ELS. The mem-
bers of euroSIC in Switzerland thus benefit from all essential access
facilities to and from “Euro-land”.
19. Continuous Linked Settlement (CLS)
The launch of the CLS system in the autumn of 2002 has been a mile-
stone in the control of credit risks in currency trading. With head-
quarters in New York, the CLS bank provides a system for eliminat-
ing settlement risks in currency trading known as the Herstatt risks.
In the past, the two sides of a currency transaction were processed at
a time shift. In a purchase transaction of dollars against Swiss
francs, the Swiss francs had to be delivered during European trading
hours, whereas the corresponding dollar amount was credited only
several hours later during American trading hours. In the meantime,
there was a credit risk for several hours. Were one of the banks to be
closed down in this period, the counter-party would incur a poten-
tially enormous dollar loss. The CLS bank now processes currency
transactions in the major currencies according to the “payment ver-
sus payment” principle which eliminates the settlement risk for such
42 Settlement members are currently linked to the system and use
CLS to process their currency payments in seven different currencies,
including the Swiss franc. Three Swiss banks – UBS, CS and ZKB –
are members of CLS. Two other financial institutions – HSBC and
Bank of America – also settle their Swiss franc currency transactions
via CLS. These five institutions enter a total of 1,400 payments at
CLS per day worth CHF 20 bn. The settlement is processed through
a direct link between the Swiss Interbank Clearing System (SIC) and
the CLS bank. These five banks resort to intraday liquidity to cover
their Swiss franc delivery commitments. The SNB provides intraday
liquidity through interest-free repo business. CLS currently process-
es around 35,000 transactions per day, worth a total of ca. USD 400
bn. CLS helps eliminate the settlement risk and contributes thus to
the safety of the international financial infrastructure.
Investment Advice and Asset Management
According to a survey carried out by Merrill Lynch and Gemini Con-
sulting, assets invested by wealthy private individuals world-wide
as at the end of 2002 was estimated at USD 27,200 bn. (up 2.3%
year-on-year). Wealthy private individuals
are defined as persons with a net dispos- Swiss banks are global
able income in excess of USD 1 million. leaders in managing
There are around 7 million such individuals private and institutional
world-wide; 2.2 million in North America,
2.6 million in Europe (including Eastern
Europe), 1.8 million in Asia and 0.3 million in Latin America.
According to the survey, around 175,000 wealthy individuals lived
in Switzerland as per end of 2002. Nearly one-third of global private
assets, i.e. USD 7,900 bn, can be attributed to the wealthiest segment
with a net disposable income of at least USD 30 million; there are an
estimated 58,000 such individuals world-wide.
An estimated 80% of the assets of wealthy private individuals
are managed by asset managers domiciled in the beneficiary’s
domestic market (= onshore); the remaining 20% of those assets are
managed and invested by trustees resident in foreign jurisdictions (=
offshore). Swiss institutions are among the global leaders in terms of
management of private as well as institutional assets. An estimated
30% of internationally invested private assets world-wide are man-
aged in Switzerland.
20. As at the end 2002, the value of securities held in customer accounts
with all Swiss banks amounted to CHF 2,945 bn; foreign customers
accounted for CHF 1,659 bn (or 56%). This figure does not include
life insurance, customer assets in bank balance sheets and fiduciary
The banks’ contribution to gross output and the creation and pre-
servation of jobs in the overall economy is mainly due to the high
level of productivity in the banking sector. The productivity also
reflects the banking sector’s competitiveness on an international
scale. Asset management plays a crucial role in this respect, as it gen-
erates more than half of the banks’ total output. That is CHF 25 bn
or 6% of GDP. Private customer business accounts for an estimated
80% of this output.
In recent years, a moderate trend towards concentration has been
observed in private banking. Nonetheless, private banking remains a
widely fragmented business area at both the domestic and the glob-
al level: for instance, UBS AG, the global market leader, controls a
market share of 2% of the financial assets managed on behalf of
“high net worth individuals” world-wide (the world top ten together
manage approximately 8%).
The banks’ success in asset management is attributed to their long-
standing tradition in the business, traditionally stable legal and
political conditions, a stable currency, the high efficiency and relia-
bility of the banks and last but not least a good long-term perform-
ance of investments. Performance is a crucial factor especially for
institutional investor, although private customers are taking an
increasing interest in performance, too. The big banks have expressed
their intention to strengthen their onshore private banking activities,
i.e. to service customers at their domiciles.
Asset management has a strong positive impact on the securities and
underwriting business in Switzerland. Thanks to the volume of assets
they manage, the banks in particular have substantial placement
power, which translates into an important competitive advantage in
the underwriting business: approximately half of all new Eurobond
issues are placed in customer portfolios managed by Swiss banks.
Safe Custody of Securities and Valuables
Safe custody of securities and valuable items (jewellery, documents
etc.) is one of the original bank services. With a view to rationalising
the custody of securities, banks began establishing external collective
custodies (SEGA) some thirty years ago. An increasing demateriali-
sation of securities has resulted from the banks’ efforts to further
simplify safe custody. Although shareholders in listed companies are
still entitled to hold physical shares, such physical shares are issued
only on explicit request (deferred printing of securities).
21. Global Custody
Large institutional investors typically hold securities in several
countries. Big banks specialising in the securities business hold such
securities in safe custody, and they monitor and manage them irre-
spective of the place of custody. This service is known as “global
custody”. Above and beyond safe custody, it includes settlement,
collection of interest and dividend payments, providing information
on corporate policies (e.g. capital increases) and tax returns. Further-
more, added value services such as securities lending and various
information services (portfolio analyses, performance calculation,
fund accounting etc.) are gaining in importance.
Safe custody, and especially global custody, is a fast growing business.
However, global competition is causing a decline in margins and a
growing cost squeeze. Moreover, growing customer expectations are
giving rise to continuous costly investments in processing systems
which can only be justified by sufficiently high business volumes.
Providers of financial services are also attracted to Switzerland by
the efficiency of its capital market logistics, which facilitate the
smooth settlement of securities transactions. The joint organisations
of the banks and stock exchange are the
main providers of logistics. The banks in
Financial services pro-
Switzerland are thus well equipped to par- viders are also attracted
ticipate successfully in the global custody to Switzerland by the
market. efficiency of its capital
Draft for a Securities Custody Act
At the initiative of the SBA, and in co-operation with the Swiss
Federal Banking Commission (FBC) and the Swiss National Bank
(SNB), a draft for a Securities Custody Act was submitted to the
Swiss Federal Department of Finance (SFDF) in early 2003. The FDF
manages the current revision of this draft. The final draft is expected
to be submitted for consultation in 2004.
The new law is devised as a supplement to existing securities laws,
and reflects global developments in securities trading. There is a
global trend towards dematerialisation and away from physical
circulation of conventional securities. The association of ownership
right and certificate, typical of conventional securities, is becoming
increasingly fictional. This is manifested in the fact that securities
are no longer held directly by the beneficiaries but centrally in col-
lective custody and that securities are replaced by stock rights, i.e.
non-certificated rights equivalent to securities. The Swiss Securities
Act has not been amended since 1936. There is a need for clear reg-
ulation with regard to securities held in collective custody. Moreover
uncertainties in the transfer of stock rights need to be eliminated.
The new Securities Custody Act aims to close the existing loopholes
and thus enhances the legal basis for the securities business. It
governs in particular the collective custody of securities and global
certificates which comprise several securities. In addition, it provides
clear regulation of stock rights, which become inscribed stock by
entry in the public central registry of a central custody organisation.
Stock rights thus obtain a qualitative status that exceeds the status
22. of a common receivable, and become equivalent to securities held in
collective custody. Moreover, the draft also provides standards for
the transfer of rights to securities, global certificates and inscribed
stock in collective custody, as well as for the appointment of security
Fiduciary business includes investments, loans and equity interests
which the bank holds or grants in its own name, but for the account
and at the risk of a customer, on the basis of a written agreement.
The instructing customer bears the full currency, transfer, price and
collection risks on the one hand, and is the exclusive beneficiary of
all accruals from such transactions on the other hand. The bank
charges a commission for its services.
Fiduciary business is still very important. The volume of assets
under fiduciary contracts totalled CHF 339 bn as per end of 2002.
Over the past ten years, about four-fifths of all fiduciary money has
come from outside Switzerland. About 40% of fiduciary deposits
originated from European countries. Banks invested 90% of fiduciary
deposits in Europe. The largest investments were made in the UK,
followed by Belgium, Luxemburg, the Netherlands and France. Less
than 1% of fiduciary deposits were invested in Switzerland.
Derivative Financial Instruments
Derivative financial instruments are financial contracts whose prices
are derived from the market value of their underlying instruments.
Nowadays, however, the derivatives market often dominates that
market for underlying instruments, i.e. the derivatives market deter-
mines the prices in the underlying market. One of the reasons is that
turnover volume in many derivative markets far exceed those in the
Derivatives are based on various combinations of three basic types
of financial contracts: Forwards/futures, swaps and options. The
underlying instruments are subdivided into interest rate, currency
and index derivatives. Derivative contracts are further categorised as
exchange-traded contracts and over-the-counter (OTC) contracts.
23. 4 Economic Challenges 1 This chapter is also
published in the
SBA Annual Report
for the Banks 1 2002/2003
As a result of the economic downturn and the protracted bear market,
the banks have suffered a decline – in some cases considerable – in
fee and commission income over the past two years. Investment
banking and wealth management houses have seen their revenues
contract. In addition, some banks incurred considerable losses from
their proprietary equity holdings. The overall picture is nuanced
slightly by the fact that despite lower revenues from asset manage-
ment, trading and securities underwriting as well as losses on pro-
prietary equity holdings, income from traditional interest activities,
especially in the retail segment, continues to be relatively strong.
Retail-oriented banks achieve comparatively stable results, particu-
larly if they have their credit risks under control. This is the case for
the overwhelming majority of players in the sector, not least due to
the lessons learned from the painful experiences of the nineties.
Additional Synergy and Savings Potential Exists
The continued stagnation also raises questions about proportionate
capacity. Wealth management and investment banking are areas
which were expanded rapidly in the nineties. As stock prices and
business volumes rose, so, too, did the personnel capacities in a
number of the banks – to a level that in many cases is unsustainable
over the medium term. Moreover, we must assume that employment
cannot be maintained at present levels even if revenues stagnate.
Technological progress has a “labour-saving” effect, albeit not to
the same degree in all areas. The greatest potential for synergies and
savings lies in back-office processing and IT where there is a high fixed
24. cost component. However, fully exploiting this potential generally
requires some form of cooperation between the banks. Faced with
the twin pressures of rising costs and falling margins, the banks are
striving to reduce recognised overcapacities in a targeted manner. In
most cases, this is impossible without reducing headcount. Between
the end of 2001 and the end of 2002, Swiss banks cut a net total (i.e.
taking into account newly-created positions) of around 2,000 jobs,
a fall of 2%. This in a sector which for decades had been a job
creator; a sector, moreover, which employs people with superior
qualifications and remunerates them accordingly – a development
unprecedented in the annals of Swiss economic history.
The banks are reacting to the unfavourable environment by manag-
ing costs more closely, concentrating on their core business and in
some cases cutting jobs. Necessary though these measures may be,
they are rarely sufficient in their own right. In order to get back on
a more stable course over the medium term, it is also necessary in
some cases to adapt business models, rethink value chains, open up
structures and rationalise processes.
The Choice of Business Model is Decisive
The difficult situation currently facing the banks is due in large part
to the ongoing stagnation of the overall economy. At the same time,
structural challenges are also evident. For the individual bank, or
rather its Board of Directors and Management, the key issue is to
identify the medium-term business model most adequately suited to
securing the bank’s long-term earnings power. Every bank seeks to
create and maximise cost advantages and economies of scope by
choosing a business model that best matches its particular strengths
and resources, for example by fostering a high level of integrity
(economies of trust) as a value proposition in the wealth manage-
ment business, through the quality and scope of the products and
services it offers (economies of scope), by bundling large volumes
for processing and/or providing superior back-office execution
(economies of scale) – or through a combination of these strategies.
In principle, a bank can narrow or widen the focus of its business
activity. In the late nineties, for example, a model in which banking
operated as part of a broadly diversified financial conglomerate that
also encompassed insurance was considered to have massive potential.
In part due to the negative performance of the stock markets, which
had a marked impact on the insurance sector and led to a drastic
reduction in the equity component of investment portfolios, the
banc assurance option is now viewed with a good deal more caution.
25. In recent times, the traditional model of a universal bank has come
more to the fore, complemented and extended by the philosophy of
what is known as “open architecture”. The idea, taken originally
from fund distribution, involves a bank
also delivering funds from third-party Universal banks
providers, provided that such funds satisfy with “open architecture”
defined quality requirements. The concept have come more to
can be extended not only to other banking
services like mortgages, but also to internal
bank processes such as the processing and settlement of securities
transactions. Taken to its logical conclusion, the philosophy leads to
a banking model whose value is based primarily on its reputation as
a hub for sales, quality assurance and customer service, with the
majority of the products and services sold actually being bought in.
The core competences of a networked bank of this kind would
include branding, product range policy and of course advisory ser-
vices. In the case of companies concentrating on product manufac-
ture (not necessarily banks), however, the core competencies would
include the quality of process management, cost leadership and sim-
ilar. Larger universal banks in particular are probably in a position
to act not only as providers of products and services to other banks
but also as buyers from them. The majority of banks are likely to act
as providers, complementing their product range by offering target-
ed third-party products and outsourcing some internal processes to
external service providers, some of whom may be other banks.
New Challenges in Wealth Management
Various and at times conflicting developments are also evident at
individual business level, for example in asset management, which is
the largest sector for the Swiss banks and accounts for 50% of their
output. This business is still highly fragmented throughout the
world, although a trend toward concentration has been evident for
some time. In general, the financial markets in the industrialised
nations are highly information-efficient, and this makes it difficult
to outperform a benchmark over the long term and on a risk-adjust-
ed basis. As a result of this, and for reasons of cost efficiency, some
investors are increasingly favouring passive investment strategies,
whereby the asset managers wholly or partially replicate the returns
of a prescribed index portfolio (index tracking). An index tracking
strategy tends to favour the big asset managers, as they are better
able to spread the costs of such a strategy over the assets under man-
agement. In the United States, for instance, one-third of pension
fund assets is managed passively. Large asset management firms are
likely to benefit more from index tracking strategies, as they are
more in a position to spread the cost of such strategies (economies of
scale). There is also a tendency towards specialisation. This can be
traced back to the fact that the number of asset classes and invest-
ment instruments is growing constantly and also includes a large
number of non-traditional or alternative vehicles such as hedge
funds, private equity, real estate or high-yield bonds. The manage-
ment of these investments generally requires a great deal of time and
effort, which encourages increased focus and specialisation on the
26. part of providers. Only a relatively small band of providers are in a
position both to implement the economies of scale afforded by pas-
sive investment strategies and to realise specialisation gains with
regard to the marketing of alternative investments.
Continued Success Thanks to Standardisation
In view of the foregoing, what can we expect from the Swiss banks
over the next few years in terms of the development of their service
offering and their market behaviour? For one thing, an increased
standardisation of products, services and processes, primarily with a
view to further improving cost efficiency. The accompanying disin-
tegration of the production structure, in other
Competition among words an increased tendency towards spinning
banks for profitable cus- off parts of the business and instead buying in
tomers and good risks products and services (outsourcing), will
enable banks to take full advantage of any
is set to increase. economies of scale. The trend already evident
today towards customising pricing to individual customers on the
basis of risk, creditworthiness and membership of a specific segment
does not stand in contradiction to this. Competition among banks
for profitable customers and good risks is set to intensify further in
the future, and banking regulation (notably the Basel II capital ade-
quacy requirements) has a clear role to play in this process. Finally,
systems and processes (built for instance around common platforms)
as well as the range of products and services offered are likely to be
increasingly opened up to attractive third-party providers.
27. 5 Supervision and
Regulation of Banks
The Federal Banking Commission (FBC)
As an independent federal administrative agency, the FBC supervises
banks and financial markets. Its supervisory authority also covers
investment funds, central mortgage bond institutions, stock exchanges,
brokers as well as the disclosure of holdings and public offers.
The FBC safeguards the rights of creditors and investors, and guar-
antees the proper functioning of banking and securities markets.
Furthermore, it supervises compliance with legal regulations and
passes all necessary ordinances and decrees to this effect. The combat
of money laundering also falls to the FBC. It is responsible for
monitoring the prevention of money laundering and ensuring that
underlying financial intermediaries comply with the Anti-Money
Laundering Act. At the international level, the FBC is member of the
Basel Committee on Banking Supervision, a body founded by central
banks and banking supervisors in 1975.
Banking Regulation: Purpose and Basis
Swiss banking law does not provide an explicit definition of pur-
pose. However, individual articles as well as the inception and prac-
tice of the supervisory authority clearly stipulate that the primary
function is to protect the banks’ creditors, in particular depositors.
Over the past years, great attention has been awarded not only to
the protection of individual customers, but also to overall functions.
The latter include protecting the system (avoiding chain reactions)
as well as confidence. Both the protection of individual customers
and functions ultimately serve to maintain the stability of the finan-
cial system (institutions and markets).
28. Banking legislation pursues primarily public interests. It protects
bank customers (industrial protection) and ensures in part the fulfil-
ment of constitutional economic assignments; most provisions form
part of public law. Banking legislation consists of the following:
– Federal Act on Banks and Savings Banks (Swiss banking law, SBL)
– Federal Investment Fund Act (Investment fund law, IFL)
– Federal Act on Stock Exchanges and Securities Trading
(Stock exchange law, SESTA)
– Central Bank Act (CBA)
– Currency and Means of Payment Act. (CMP)
These are complemented by relevant ordinances and a growing number
of special laws (on consumer lending, bonds, money laundering).
Banks must also observe the circulars issued by the FBC, the Code of
conduct issued by the SBA, and in particular the Swiss Banks’ Code
of Conduct with Regard to the Exercise of Due Diligence (CDB), as
well as the regulations of the Swiss Stock Exchange and the Swiss
Stock Exchange Admission Board.
Reform of Financial Market Regulation
The “Zufferey” group of experts, commissioned by the Swiss Fed-
eral Department of Finance, published their summary report in
November 2000. In it, the experts proposes that insurance and
banking supervision be merged into one supervisory authority. The
Swiss Federal Council subsequently appointed another group of
experts headed Prof. Ulrich Zimmerli. This panel had the task of
preparing the legal grounds for the proposed integration of the
financial market regulation.
In July 2003, the Zimmerli group of experts submitted their first
partial report on financial market regulation and their draft for the
relevant federal law to the Swiss Federal Department of Finance
(FDF). This set of documents will be submitted for consultation in
autumn 2003. The legal message to parliament should follow in
The draft of a new Federal Law on Financial Market Regulation
(“FINMAG”) provides for the creation of a federal financial market
regulator (“FINMA”) as a public legal entity. The FINMA is intended
to assume the tasks which are carried out
The tasks at present carried at present independently by the FBC and
out by the FBC and Federal the Federal Office of Private Insurance.
Office of Private Insurance Apart from containing structural provi-
sions, the bill also standardises the sanc-
are to be integrated.
tioning instruments of the future regulato-
ry body. Material supervisory regulations will, however, remain in
effect, in due consideration of the specific sector requirements. Stan-
dard regulation will also apply to the co-operation with domestic
and foreign authorities. The future integration of the Money Laun-
29. dering Control Authority within the new regulatory body remains yet
to be decided. The question whether independent wealth managers,
securities and foreign exchange dealers should also be regulated by
this authority, is to be examined in greater detail, as well.
Banks, Banking Commission and Auditors
Impeccable Business Conduct as Requirement for Banking Licence
The exercise of banking activities is subject to a licence issued by the
FBC. Banks must meet legal requirements in order to obtain the
licence. Accepting money from the public and the management of
such money in one’s own name on a professional business scale is
subject to a licence on principle. Professional business is defined as
any activity that involves more than 20 customers. The term bank-
ing business is applicable, if the money accepted is used to extend
loans to third parties. Investment funds are subject to a licence,
because they accept money from the public on a professional basis
for the purpose of collective capital investment under the manage-
ment of a third party.
The principal requirement for a licence is the assurance of a perma-
nently impeccable business conduct. Otherwise, the FBC has the
authority to withdraw the licence. In this case, thus inevitably causing
the bank to be liquidated.
Auditors as Instruments of the FBC
Banks and their corporate bodies must primarily ensure that regulations
are observed internally. The law has also provided for an additional
means of supervision consisting of the FBC and external auditors.
In contrast to most other countries, banks in Switzerland are super-
vised by external auditors and not by the FBC directly. The supervi-
sion by statutory bank auditors is the principal means of protection
for bank customers. Swiss auditing associations and fiduciary com-
panies are deemed eligible statutory auditors. They must be entirely
independent from their clients, in economic as well as personnel
terms, and they have to be adequately qualified. The FBC authorises
and supervises the auditors.
Within the annual audit, the auditor usually examines the compli-
ance of the layout and contents of the annual report with legal and
statutory regulations, general compliance with the bank law and the
banking ordinance as well as compliance with other bank licence
The auditing report is initially sent to the body responsible for overall
management, supervision and control, i.e. the Board of Directors or,
in the case of cantonal banks, the banking council. The body in turn
forwards the report to the FBC. The auditors thus act as the extend-
ed arm of the FBC (dual supervision). The auditor’s report furnishes
the FBC with a detailed view of the bank’s overall condition. The
FBC is also entitled to demand further information and documents
from the bank as well as the auditor, and to impose extraordinary
30. Reform of Bank Audit
In the year 2000, the FBC appointed a panel of experts chaired by
Prof. Peter Nobel, to elaborate a comprehensive reform of the audit
system. While the experts gave good ratings to the system of dual
supervision, they recommended reforms in many other areas. An
FBC commission is currently elaborating the specific measures to this
effect. The report by the Zimmerli panel of experts (financial
markets regulation) also proposes improvements in this area. The
FBC is already in the process of building an administration unit
within the banking commission, who will be in charge of supervising
the auditors. Moreover, all banks and securities traders, except the
big banks, will be examined in future at regular intervals by an
auditor other than their regular auditing firm (second audit). Clearly
defined areas of the big banks will also be audited in greater depth
at least once per year.
The FBC supervises the banks with regard to their economic stability
and management integrity. However, banks are autonomous in
terms of their business policies: within the perimeters of due dili-
gence, every bank is free to choose its business. Neither does the SBL
define the contractual relationship between banks and their cus-
tomers. This area is governed by private law. The supervisory bodies
of the bank supervise compliance with all the relevant laws as well
as the articles of association, the regulations and directives, and they
ensure that a bank always acts in accordance with the applicable
regulations and its internal guidelines. The regulatory bodies include
in particular the internal controlling department, internal audit and
supervision by the Board of Directors.
Business Activity Requirements
The pursuit of banking activities is subject to a licence issued by the
FBC. Banks must meet the legal requirements in order to obtain this
licence. Such requirements relate in particular to minimum capital,
the bank’s internal structure and the integrity of management. Other
prerequisites pertain to business activities, in particular equity,
liquidity, diversification of risk, market risks, netting and reporting.
The balance sheet of a bank differs substantially from that of an
industrial company. The assets of a bank are typically 95% financial
assets, while liabilities are primarily deposits and borrowed funds
(the majority of which are short term); the bank’s equity capital
accounts for only around 10% of the balance sheet total.
The SBL requires that banks provide enough equity capital to ensure
they can cover substantial losses before creditor claims are impaired.
Equity is then used as a buffer to cover any losses. The weighted
(with various rates) assets on the balance sheet that involve risk, certain
off-balance sheet transactions, as well as open securities positions,
foreign exchange and derivative transactions must be covered by 8%
equity. The size of the rates is inversely proportionate to the securi-
ty of the positions to be covered. The capital adequacy requirements
must be met both individually and on a consolidated basis. Statutory
31. equity capital covers the market and credit risks of the banks. Since
1998 banks have been able to choose between the standard proce-
dure and their own model when covering their market risks. The lat-
ter requires the approval of the FBC.
New Basel Capital Accord (Basel II)
Today’s national equity capital provisions for banks are based on the
“Basel Capital Accord” of 1988 which is currently being revised
(Basel II). The objective of the revision is in particular to increase the
risk awareness, i.e. the equity capital requirements for banks will
reflect the individual bank’s own risk structure more strongly than
they do at present. Basel II will thus have a significant impact on the
banks’ risk management.
Chronology Basel II
1988 July Publication of Basel Capital Accord (Basel I)
1992 End Entry into force of Basel I
1996 January Basel market risk paper
1999 June First consultative paper on revising
the Capital Accord (Basel II)
2001 January Second consultative paper on Basel II
2003 May Third consultative paper on Basel II
2003 Autumn Publication of the new Capital Accord
2006 End Entry into force of Basel II
The Basel Capital Accord is based on a concept made up of three
pillars: There has been no change to the first pillar which continues
to stipulate the minimum capital require-
ments for banks. Previous equity require- A new feature is that
ments based on credit and market risks are banks can choose
complemented in future by the obligation between various proce-
to provide additional equity cover for cer-
dures for assessing risks.
tain operative risks. A new feature is that
banks can now choose between various procedures for the assess-
ment of risks (i.a., external ratings may be applied to the assessment
of credit risks if certain conditions are met). The second pillar tight-
ens up national supervision procedures. This aims to improve condi-
tions that will allow any irregularities to be identified at an early
stage. The third pillar aims to improve market discipline by requir-
ing banks to disclose specific information.
The publication of the final “New Basel Capital Accord” is sched-
uled for end of 2003. As an international “soft law”, “Basel II” will
subsequently need to be implemented on a national scale by the
respective supervisory authorities and legislative bodies. The imple-
mentation is expected to be concluded by end of 2006. In Switzerland,
the implementation is being prepared by a mixed task force headed
by the FBC.
Banks should be prevented from building up excessive risk which
could harm depositors (and taxpayers). Among the measures aimed
at ensuring this are regulations governing concentrations of risks
(lump risks) and loans to bank directors and senior bank executives
(intergroup loans, to prevent a conflict of interests).
By using short-term deposits to grant long-term loans, banks “trans-
form” maturities. The varying lengths of interest rate lock-down
periods for the loans extended and amounts due in make banks vul-
32. nerable to changes in interest rates. Banks also have a direct liquidity
risk, however, if an unexpected number of customers withdraw their
assets at the same time, subsequently forcing the bank to liquidate a
part of its assets early, a move which may result in a loss for the
bank. The SBL therefore prescribes a reasonable ratio between, on
the one hand, tangible assets and assets that can be readily sold and,
on the other hand, the short-term liabilities owed to the banks.
In the event of bankruptcy, bank creditors’ claims are satisfied in an
order of ranks fixed by law. Claims protected by pledge, are acquitted
first through the liquidation of the pledge. Other claims are cate-
gorised in three ranks of creditor claims. Claims by 1st rank creditors
have first priority, followed by 2nd and 3rd rank creditors, always
depending on the availability capital stock. Claims by 3rd creditors,
which usually account for the largest part of claims, may be satisfied
only in part. However, in deviation from the ranks provided by the
Swiss Bankruptcy Act, SBL provisions stipulate that certain claims
up to an amount of CHF 30,000 per creditor have to be categorised
in a rank between the 2nd and 3rd rank of creditors. These claims
have priority versus (other) 3rd rank creditor claims (considering
strict equity capital requirements, such claims are virtually guaran-
teed). Bank depositors are more privileged to the effect that their
deposited assets are treated as preferential claims in the case of
bankruptcy, i.e. such assets are excluded a priori from the bankruptcy
estate and paid out directly to the depositors.
Amendment of the Bank Insolvency Law
In November 2002, the Federal Council drew up a legal message to
the parliament concerning changes to banking legislation in the area
of reorganisation and liquidation of banks and the protection of
depositors. The draft awards a broader authority to the FBC in the
reorganisation and liquidation of banks. If the
The liquidation FBC has “legitimate reasons to assume” that a
procedure following a bank has a debt overload, liquidity problems or
bankruptcy should does no longer meet equity capital requirements
become simpler, faster despite warnings, the FBC should have the
authority to impose measures of protection,
and less expensive. reorganisation procedures or the liquidation.
The draft also contains proposed measures for system protection in
payment transfers and securities trading, in particular the irre-
versibility of system entries. In the case of a “legitimate prospect for
reorganisation”, the FBC may impose reorganisation proceedings.
The liquidation procedure as a result of a bank’s bankruptcy should
become simpler, faster and less expensive. To this effect, the power
of decision (hitherto split between the FBC and the civil courts) will
be assigned entirely to the FBC.
33. Amendment of the Depositor Protection Agreement
Last but not least, a mandatory deposit protection is to be intro-
duced. It should be arranged internally by the banks within their
self-regulation area and require FBC approval. In future, the prefer-
ential treatment in the event of bankruptcy will be extended above
and beyond savings, deposit, salary and pension accounts, to all
Experience has proved that there is usually sufficient cover for a
bank’s preferential liabilities – not least due to the equity capital
requirements stipulated in the Banking Ordinance. To ensure
prompt payment of preferential deposits to bank creditors in the
event of a bank’s collapse, there needs to be a system which will
advance the liquidity for such payments.
The SBA Depositor Protection Agreement was established for this
purpose in Switzerland. If a signatory bank files for insolvency pro-
ceedings or bankruptcy, the SBA will ensure expeditious remittance
of protected assets to the respective customers. When a case arises,
the SBA will apply an agreed quota to raise contributions from the
signatories of the Agreement. Since this assessment system takes
time, the SBA may borrow the funds required for interim financing.
For the remaining part of the liquidation procedure, the SBA
assumes the role of the creditors for the amount it remitted.
The maximum amount under the Depositor Protection Agreement is
currently set at CHF 1 bn. In the revised SBL this amount should be
raised to CHF 4 bn. Banks will have to hold additional liquidity for
half of that amount.
Annual Statement and Balance Sheets
Banks are primarily involved with other people’s money. Their
financial statements are therefore particularly important for creditors
(and owners) as a reporting instrument. Moreover, regulations gov-
erning financial reporting are an essential part of the protection
afforded to functions.
Although banks have to comply with the accounting standards set
out in company law (art. 662–670 Swiss Code of Obligations), they
are governed primarily by the provisions of the SBL (art. 6) and
the related Implementing Ordinance (art. 23–28) which, as a “lex
specialis”, take precedence over company law. More detailed infor-
mation on accounting requirements can be found in the FBC Guide-
lines on Accounting Regulations and the FBC circulars.
Banks with global operations increasingly use international account-
ing standards (specifically IAS). The FBC permits this practice, but
requires an explanatory statement, in the form of notes, drawn up in
accordance with Swiss law.
The annual financial statement consists of a balance sheet, a state-
ment of income and notes. The statement is complemented by an
annual report setting out detailed information on all important
events that occurred after the balance sheet date. Banks disclosing
total assets of CHF 100 million or more and involved in balance
sheet transactions to a significant extent also have to issue a cash
flow statement as part of their annual statement requirements.
34. FBC Guidelines on Accounting Regulations (FBC GAR)
The new FBC Guidelines on Accounting Regulations (FBC GAR)
were enacted at the end of 2002. However, they become only bind-
ing for annual statements closing as from 31st December 2003. For
the most part, the revision of the FBC GAR is “technical”. Among
other things, it includes the incorporation of the fundamental provi-
sions of the Swiss GAAP FER 19. The listing regulations of the SWX
require listed banks which publish a consolidated annual statement
to publish also individual accounts established on the basis of the
true-and-fair-view principle. Banks whose gross income consists to
at least one-third of commission and services business, have to pres-
ent the managed and deposited assets.
Self-Regulation and Code of Conduct
The banking, stock exchange and anti-money laundering laws are
minimum standards which leave scope for specification by the code
of conduct. The code of conduct forms part of the banks’ and securities
traders’ system of self-regulation and plays an
Self-regulation of banks important role in the Swiss banking sector. The
and securities traders essential advantages of self-regulation lie in the
plays an important role fact that they relate closely to business practice,
they are established by regulators with profes-
in the Swiss banking sional expertise and they are more readily
sector. accepted and implemented.
The SBA passes the code of conduct and the FBC enforces it in its
capacity as a public supervisory authority. This sovereign enforce-
ment ensures that the SBA code of conduct is binding for all banks.
For the purposes of the FBC, compliance with the code of conduct is
equal to the “assurance of impeccable business conduct” and thus
forms part of the banking licence requirements that financial servic-
es companies have to fulfil permanently. This private code of con-
duct thus ranks in fact as a public standard and is therefore subject
to sanctions by banking law. The FBC currently recognises 14 guide-
lines and agreements as part of the code of conduct; auditors have to
examine the banks’ and securities traders’ compliance with these
guidelines and agreements.
Code of Conduct with Regard to the Exercise of Due Diligence (CDB 03)
The Code of Conduct with regard to the Exercise of Due Diligence
is of particular importance. The 6th version (CDB 03) entered into
force on 1st July 2003. The identification of contracting parties and
Identification of con- the establishment of the beneficial owners are
still the core elements of the CDB. The CDB
tracting parties and esta- contains detailed instructions as to the identi-
blishing the beneficial fication procedures and document verifica-
owners are still core ele- tion duties. The CDB also includes provisions
on mandatory records. The CDB further pro-
ments of the CDB. hibits active assistance by the banks in the
flight of capital in countries with restrictions with regard to invest-
ments abroad. In the same vein, the CDB prohibits active assistance
by the banks in tax evasion and similar acts by issuing incomplete
certifications. An independent supervisory commission monitors
and sanctions violations against the CDB, and may impose fines of
up to CHF 10 m.
35. Some provisions regarding customer identification have been tight-
ened in the 2003 version of the CDB. For instance, in establishing the
beneficial owners, banks must require also require information on
the date of birth and citizenship, in order to facilitate any future
identification of persons and exclusion of neutral third parties. Fur-
thermore, the verification of the identity of legal entities not listed in
the Commercial Register must include the identity verification of the
persons opening the account. If an account is opened through corre-
spondence, mere exchange of correspondence is no longer sufficient
as a method of identification, but the bank must obtain a certified
copy of the contracting person’s passport or identity document. The
identity verification option “known personally” has been cancelled.
Proof of identity is mandatory also for individuals personally known
to the bank staff.
Overview of Key SBA Codes of Conduct
Agreement on Due Diligence (CDB). The CDB obliges banks to
know their customers, to identify the beneficial owners, and to
provide no assistance in tax evasion or illegal export of capital.
Directives on the Independence of Financial Research.
Reduction and elimination of possible conflicts of interest in
financial research and analysis.
Agreement on depositor protection. Guarantee to bank’s
creditors (depositors) for expeditious repayment of up to CHF
30,000 should the bank collapse.
Code of conduct for securities traders. Basic regulation
governing all securities traders under the Stock Exchange Law,
specifying their responsibility with regard to disclosure, due
diligence and loyalty.
Guidelines for the management of country risk. Minimum
requirements for banks with regard to internal structures and
processes for managing country risk.
Guidelines for risk management in trading and the use of
financial derivatives. Formulation of internal guidelines with
regard to risk management.
Guidelines on portfolio management agreements.
Principles of customer portfolio management.
Guidelines for the treatment of dormant assets. Avoiding
instances where assets become dormant, re-establishing
contact with the customer, the banks’ duties with regard to
dormant assets, procedures for tracing dormant assets.
Swiss Banking Ombudsman
The SBA established the “Swiss Bank Ombudsman Foundation” in
the fall of 1992. The Ombudsman acts as an impartial mediator
between banks and their customers. He can be called upon by every
bank customer, in particular those little acquainted with the banking
business, e.g. private individuals or SMEs. The Ombudsman suggests
solutions on the basis of statements he receives from both parties.
His recommendations are highly respected although they are not
legally binding. This forum enables dissatisfied bank customers to
settle disputes with their banks in an efficient and unbureaucratic
manner, and dispenses of the necessity to take tedious and costly
The Ombudsman is also a port of call for people with enquiries
regarding assets which became dormant subsequent to 1945. Assets
are deemed dormant if the respective customer contact has ceased
36. and cannot be established despite the bank’s active search efforts.
The SBA has issued guidelines on this subject.
International Co-Operation among
Legal co-operation governs the co-operation between judicial author-
ities, whereas administrative co-operation governs the co-operation
between administrative and supervisory authorities. Statutory guar-
antees warrant in both instances the safeguarding of justified cus-
Administrative Co-Operation and In Situ Monitoring
On principle, the FBC may furnish foreign supervisory authorities
with information which falls within official confidentiality and is
not available to the public. The release of such information (admin-
istrative co-operation) is subject to three statutory conditions:
– Information may be conveyed exclusively for the purpose of direct
supervision of banks and other authorised financial institutions.
Administrative assistance to tax authorities is prohibited.
– The foreign authority seeking co-operation must be bound by offi-
cial and professional discretion and it must be the direct recipient of
– The foreign authority seeking co-operation is not permitted to convey
information to other authorities or public supervisory bodies, other
than by the FBC’s prior consent or a general treaty authorisation.
Information may not be conveyed to pros-
The foreign authority ecution authorities if legal co-operation in
seeking co-operation must criminal cases is restricted. This is to pre-
be bound by official and clude an evasion of prosecution assistance
The revised SBL enacted on 1st October 1999 provides a legal basis
which enables in situ monitoring in Switzerland by foreign supervision
authorities. Such monitoring is restricted to information which is
necessary to ensure a consolidated supervision of the banks con-
cerned. Moreover, the monitoring is subject to the provisions on
mutual administrative assistance.
Investigations into issues pertaining directly or indirectly to assets
managed on behalf of individual customers or deposits, can only be
carried out by the FBC. Such investigations are governed by the Fed-
eral Act on Administrative Proceedings. Bank customers have a right
to appeal against an injunction issued by the FBC, at the Swiss Feder-
al Court. Both, the FBC and the Federal Court must grant bank cus-
tomers a fair hearing and access to the relevant documents.
The Swiss Federal Court takes these requirements very seriously. It
has forestalled administrative assistance interaction between the FBC
and the SEC on several occasions, because the SEC is governed by
American laws and therefore does not fully comply with the Swiss
requirements for official confidentiality and the principle of speciality.
Particularly with a view to the combat of terrorism and money laun-
dering, international understanding has prevailed that monitoring of
due diligence compliance in terms of customer identity verification
constitutes an element of supervisory authority responsibilities. This
also comprises in situ monitoring, i.e. the examination of customer
documents by authorities of the bank’s country of origin. The FBC
37. deems current Swiss provisions in this context too restrictive to be
applied in a meaningful manner in practice. Therefore, the FBC has
taken the initiative to amend the Swiss laws governing administrative
assistance. The SBA fundamentally supports this initiative. Conse-
quently, a mixed task force of FBC and SBA representatives has elab-
orated a proposal for a solution. In cases where customer related
information is transferred abroad, it is crucial from our perspective
that legal protection remains warranted to the parties concerned
(applicability of administrative procedure).
Due to the international orientation of the Swiss financial centre,
many foreign banks have long established their branches and sub-
sidiaries in Switzerland. The principle of consolidated supervision of
such foreign banks by authorities in their countries of origin is
granted under the condition that such supervision is conducted in
accordance with Swiss law. Subject to compliance with certain
requirements, banks may convey to their foreign head offices any
such information and documents as may be necessary for the pur-
pose of consolidated supervision. Consolidated supervision by
banks in the country of origin is thus warranted.
Bank Customer Confidentiality
The banking secret is not a secret in relation to the bank but to the
bank’s customers. It is therefore more appropriately called the bank
customer confidentiality. The Swiss bank customer confidentiality
differs from that of other countries most
notably in that it is strictly protected not Banking secrecy is not
only by civil law but also by penal law. The secrecy in relation to the
protection of privacy strongly fosters the bank but to the bank’s
customers’ confidence in their banks. This
protection constitutes a fundamental right
within the Swiss legal system. It also reflects the citizens’ right to
personal freedom – a traditional and treasured fundamental right.
The bank customer confidentiality also pursues the principle of
equality by granting equal protection to Swiss and foreign cus-
Contrary to common belief, anonymous accounts do not exist in
Switzerland. Though customers may hold a so-called numbered
account, the bank must invariably establish the customer’s identity.
The purpose of a numbered account is only to restrict access to the
information about the holder’s identity to a limited number of bank
employees, thereby offering an additional protection against a viola-
tion of confidentiality provisions. However, numbered accounts and
ordinary named accounts are equal in all legal aspects. Therefore,
for instance in the course of criminal investigations, the relevant
court is entitled to demand information from the bank.
The Swiss bank customer confidentiality is not and has never been
absolute. The SBL explicitly reserves the federal and cantonal provi-
sions about the banks’ duty to report and testify to authorities. The
duty to report is in particular part of the civil law, the law of civil
proceedings, debt collection law and bankruptcy law. The duty to
report to the relevant investigation authorities is especially part of
the criminal proceedings law and legal co-operation treaties.
38. Swiss Tax System
The Swiss tax system is based on the principle of the tax payers’ own
declaration. The bank has no duty to report to tax authorities, nei-
ther in the bank customer’s tax assessment process nor in the tax
review. It must, however, submit statements to the customer. The
same applies to cases of tax violation and tax evasion prosecuted in
administrative proceedings. However, banks cannot take recourse to
their duty of discretion in cases of tax fraud which qualify as an
offence in several cantons and on federal level and are subject to
criminal proceedings. A case of tax fraud is given if a tax payer
deliberately submits false or forged documents in order to deceive
the tax authorities and thereby attain unlawful tax advantages.
Direct Withholding Tax as a Correlation
On the federal level, the direct withholding tax represents an impor-
tant tool against tax evasion. Most forms of capital income in
Switzerland are subject to this withholding tax at a usual rate of
35% which is rather high by international comparison. The direct
withholding tax is designed to motivate recipients of taxable rev-
enues to disclose such income. Shareholders and recipients of inter-
est payments resident in Switzerland are entitled to claim a full
return of the withholding tax at receipt of the taxable amount. This
also applies to tax payers resident abroad, provided that the with-
holding tax may be offset against the taxes payable in the country of
residence on the basis of a double-taxation treaty.
Taxation of Savings Interest Earnings in the EU,
Tax Retention in Switzerland.
Switzerland opposed the EU’s original plans for a routine exchange
of information on savings income of private individuals, because this
contradicted Swiss laws. Extensive negotiations have yielded a solution
which is acceptable to both parties. In particular, Switzerland was
prepared to consider raising a tax on interest payments to accounts
held at a bank in Switzerland by EU residents, under the condition
that the EU actually implements the proposed measures within its
own territory and its dependencies, and provided that the major
financial centres outside the EU also accept equivalent regulations.
Following extensive and thorough negotiations, the EU Ministers of
Finance passed the guidelines on cross-border savings income taxa-
tion on 3rd June 2003. As from 1st January 2005, 12 EU member
states are expected to automatically exchange information among
their respective tax authorities and thus ensure that savings income
is taxed at the investor’s tax domicile. For
The withholding tax is the time being, Belgium, Luxembourg and
an important tool against Austria will be raising a withholding tax and
tax evasion. forwarding 75% of the proceeds to the
investor’s tax domicile.
The draft agreement with Switzerland envisages a similar solution
with a tax retention on savings income earned in Switzerland by EU
nationals. The core of this agreement is Switzerland’s commitment
to the introduction of a system of tax retention initially of 15%, ris-
ing to 20% and then of 35% from 2011. These figures also apply to
Belgium, Austria and Luxembourg. This tax retention will be appli-
cable to all interest payments made by a paying agent on Swiss ter-
39. ritory to private individuals resident for tax purposes in an EU mem-
ber state. Switzerland will forward 75% of the withholding tax to
the respective EU member country and retain the rest.
The subject of savings income taxation having thus been successfully
closed, two specific items remain to be resolved within the second
series of bilateral negotiations: Swiss accession to Schengen/Dublin
as well as all issues concerning the combat of fraud. In both cases,
Switzerland focuses on solutions along the benchmarks agreed in the
context of savings income taxation. The agreements under the second
series of bilateral negotiations are subject to Swiss parliamentary
endorsement; if a referendum is called, they also have to be ratified
by the Swiss electorate.
Anti-Money Laundering Measures
The fight against money laundering and organised crime is a per-
manent and important task for the authorities. Over the past years,
a number of decrees have been passed in this context: The Federal
Act on the Prevention of Money Launder-
ing in the Financial Sector, the FBC Guide- In order to preserve their
lines Concerning the Prevention and Com- reputation banks are
bating of Money Laundering as well as the anxious to ensure their ser-
provisions of the Swiss Penal Code. With
vices are not misused.
an interest to preserve their reputation,
banks are also anxious to ensure that their services are not misused.
The banks’ self-regulation is an important factor in the combat
against money laundering.
Public Law and Penal Code
– The Federal Act on the Prevention of Money Laundering in the
Financial Sector (in effect since 1st April 1998) is applicable to all
financial intermediaries who accept third-party assets, i.e. banks,
investment fund managers, securities traders, insurance companies,
attorneys, independent wealth managers, trustees, investment advi-
sors, money brokers. Its due diligence requirements are based on the
Agreement on the Bank’s Code of Conduct with Regard to the Exer-
cise of Due Diligence (CDB) and the FBC Anti-Money Laundering
Ordinance. The Anti-Money Laundering Act further contains the
obligation for financial intermediaries to report all cases of justified
suspicion of money laundering to a federal control authority. The
implementation of the law is based on self-regulation and public
direct supervision. Trustees, wealth managers, finance companies
and money brokers, thus far not subject to supervision under feder-
al law, have formed self-regulatory associations. These associations
have to issue regulations in line with legal requirements, analogous
to the CDB for banks.
– The FBC Anti-Money Laundering Ordinance came into effect in
mid-2003. The Guidelines against money laundering and money of
politically exposed persons, thus far embedded in FBC circulars,
have thus been tightened and lifted to the level of an ordinance and
extend also to the financing of terrorist activities. The ordinance
commands i.a. systematic and electronic global monitoring of risky
business relationships. Moreover, terms related to politically
exposed persons and the obligation to exercise tightened due dili-
gence have been embedded in material law for the first time.
– The Swiss Penal Code anti-money laundering provisions (art. 305bis)
of 1990 stipulate punishment measures for any action designed to
obstruct investigations into the origin or location, or prevent the
40. confiscation of assets, if such assets are known or must be assumed
to be proceeds from a crime. Professional financial intermediaries
are statutorily obliged apply the “know-your-customer” principle.
Insufficient identity verification of a contracting partner or benefi-
cial owner is deemed an offence, pursuant to SPC (art. 305ter, par. 1).
Financial institutions are allowed to report to authorities any obser-
vations leading to the conclusion that assets originate from a crime.
Such reporting does not constitute a violation of bank customer con-
fidentiality (SPC art. 305ter, par. 2).
– The new penal provisions on corruption (SPC art. 322ter–322octies)
have been in effect since 1st May 2000 and stipulate punishments for
the act of offering and receiving a bribe or preferential treatment by
or vis-à-vis Swiss officials and the act of offering a bribe to foreign
International Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters
Mutual legal assistance among judicial authorities is also customary
on an international level. Switzerland provides mutual legal assis-
tance to foreign authorities, according to the Federal Law relating to
International Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters of 1981
(amended in 1995). The course of such mutual assistance allows
information to be exchanged, assets to be frozen and if necessary
handed over to the foreign authorities concerned.
International mutual assistance in criminal matters is based essen-
tially on the principles of dual criminality, speciality and propor-
tionality. Under the dual criminality rule, Swiss courts will apply
coercive measures, such as lifting the requirement of bank customer
confidentiality, only if the act under investigation is punishable by
the laws in both Switzerland and the requesting country. Pursuant to
the speciality rule, information obtained through the mutual assis-
tance arrangement can only be used for the purposes of the criminal
proceedings for which the assistance is provided. The proportional-
ity rule serves to ensure that the measures sought in conducting the
request for assistance must be proportionate to the crime, and dis-
cretion must be exercised if the proceedings may adversely affect the
interests of persons not directly involved. In mutual legal assistance
proceedings, bank customers as well as banks have a single right of
appeal. Final cantonal judgements and Federal Police directives are
subject to a single administrative appeal to the Federal Court.
The self-regulation of banks plays a particularly important part in the
combat of money laundering. The Agreement on the Code of Con-
duct Regarding the Exercise of Due Diligence (CDB) was in effect a
long time before the enactment of the Anti-Money Laundering Act
and the inclusion of relevant provisions in the Federal Penal Code.
In co-operation with nine other international banks, the two big
banks elaborated the Wolfsberg Anti Money Laundering Principles
in 2001, a set of global due diligence standards based on the CDB.
Unlike the Swiss regulations, the Wolfsberg Principles do provide for
any sanctions or fines. Financial institutions are free to adopt these
self regulation standards. The signatory banks commit to apply the
standards globally, thus closing a loophole in international preven-
41. 6 The Banks’ Joint
Position and Significance of the
The Swiss banks’ joint organisations are based on a long-standing tra-
dition. Against the backdrop of growing international links on the one
hand and increasing competitive pressure on the other hand, not all
businesses once deemed worth joining up with one another are still
viewed as such. However, at the same time new global associations
and networks are emerging to cope with cross-border transactions.
Basis systems capable of leveraging large volumes and uniform
structures to produce cost and logistics benefits for all participants
have a promising future ahead of them. Foremost among these sys-
tems is the Swiss franc clearing system provided by the Swiss Inter-
bank Clearing SIC.
However, conflicts can easily surface with Systems producing cost
joint organisations with direct interfaces to and logistics benefits
bank customers. Such systems are involved for all participants have
at critical points in the banks’ output chains.
a promising future.
The credit card business is one example:
most banks use credit cards as a customer “loyalty” instrument;
however, since they want to shape the customer relationship them-
selves, they are often not prepared to cede the control of their credit
card business to a joint organisation.
In the future, joint organisations will operate outside national borders.
Global infrastructures, such s Continuous Linked Settlement (CLS)
will increasingly shape the cross-border transactions of the future.
Typically, small and medium-sized banks will not be direct members
of such international groups, but are more likely to make use of
these groups’ services or parts thereof through big banks.
42. Outsourcing parts of banking business is also becoming increasingly
widespread on an international level. For individual banks, out-
sourcing is first and foremost a matter of business policy. However,
it also affects the financial centre as a whole. It does so to such an
extent that in 1999 the FBC was compelled to specify in one of its cir-
culars the conditions that had to be met to safeguard banking secre-
cy and data protection within the outsourcing process. One such
condition makes the approval to outsource a business area to a loca-
tion outside Switzerland contingent on proof being provided that the
company outsourcing the business, its internal and external auditors
and the FBC have unrestricted access at all times to the business are
outsourced, for the purposes of inspection and audit. The amend-
ment of this circular entered into effect on 1st November 2002.
Swiss Financial Services Group AG (SIS)
The SIS Group provides securities services to the domestic and inter-
national securities business. SIS is the holding group of the compa-
nies SIS SegaInterSettle AG, SIS Systems AG, S A G SIS Aktienregister
AG und SIS x-clear AG. The SIS Group employs a workforce of
around 700 at its locations in Zurich and Olten.
SIS SegaInterSettle AG
As the central point of turnover for Swiss securities trading, SIS
SegaInterSettle is the central depository for all Swiss securities and
acts as central clearing organisation for all transactions in Swiss secu-
rities. The settlement of international transactions in Swiss securities
is provided by SIS through its SECOM system.
SIS x-clear AG
The SIS x-clear AG is bank domiciled in Zurich and established by
Swiss law on 5th May 2003. It acts as a central counter-party in
transactions effected at the virt-x.
The Telekurs group offers services and products related to non-cash
means of payment, financial information and IT services. Telekurs
regards itself i.a. as the banks’ partner for outsourcing. Its group com-
panies process entire chains of tasks or parts thereof on behalf of the
banks. The group consists of six companies with a total workforce of
around 2,000 employees:
1 Telekurs Multipay AG
2 Telekurs Card Solutions AG
3 Swiss Interbank Clearing
4 PayNet (Schweiz) AG
5 Telekurs Financial AG
6 Telekurs Services AG
43. Telekurs Multipay AG
Telekurs Multipay AG markets and manages non-cash means of pay-
ment and electronic payment systems on behalf of private individu-
als, companies and banks. This includes credit cards (MasterCard
and Visa) as well as the ec/Maestro debit card and CASH
Telekurs Card Solutions AG
Telekurs Card Solutions AG develops and operates an open platform
for card based payment transactions. This includes products for the
assessment of payment transactions (such as card processing termi-
nals), networks (such as automatic cash tellers), card processing,
domestic and international clearing.
Swiss Interbank Clearing
Swiss Interbank Clearing manages the Swiss Interbank Clearing Sys-
tems SIC for Swiss franc payments and euroSIC for Euro payments in
and outside Switzerland. euroSIC warrants the connection to Euro-
pean payment systems, thus providing an efficient cross-border pay-
ment gateway. In addition, Swiss Interbank Clearing AG operates
the DTA and DD (LSV) systems.
PayNet (Schweiz) AG
As a SAP licence holder, PayNet (Schweiz) AG plans to operate and
market the Electronic Bill Presentment and Payment (EBPP), a pro-
prietary development of the Telekurs Group. The EBPP system per-
mits the posting and presentment of invoices via internet, as well as
subsequent automatic processing and payment. In 2002, the Ger-
man software company SAP entered upon the onward development
and maintenance of this software.
Telekurs Financial AG
Telekurs Financial AG specialises in the procurement and transmis-
sion of international financial information for investment advisors,
asset managers, financial analysts and securities administrators. A
global network of local financial market specialists supply first-hand
stock exchange information direct from the major financial centres.
Telekurs Services AG
Telekurs Services AG develops and operates systems for processing
bank and card payments.
Swiss stock exchanges are organisations governed by private law.
The SESTA assigns them a high level of autonomy and it stipulates
the principle of self-regulation.
The history of Swiss stock exchanges goes back more than 150
years. In 1996 traditional floor trading at the stock exchanges in
Geneva (founded in 1950) and Zurich (founded in 1873) was
replaced by fully electronic trading SWX.
The operation of a stock exchange in Switzerland is subject to a
licence from the FBC. The FBC examines whether transparency and
the equal treatment of investors are warranted and whether the
stock exchange is able to guarantee proper functioning of securities
44. SWX Swiss Exchange
The SWX has 95 domestic and foreign member banks. Foreign banks
and brokers are allowed to trade at the SWX directly from abroad as
“Remote Participants”. They benefit from the same infrastructure as
SWX participants in Switzerland.
The core business of the SWX is to ensure proper functioning of the
stock exchange. More than 5,000 securities are traded at the SWX:
stocks, investment funds, exchange traded funds (EFT), bonds, euro-
bonds and options. Since 25th June 2001, Swiss blue chips have been
traded on the virt-x trading platform. More than 170 foreign stocks
are also listed on the SWX Swiss Exchange. These stocks, mostly
leading international companies from North America, Germany, the
Netherlands and Japan, are traded in Swiss francs. Eurobonds
denominated in US dollars, euro and pound sterling have been trad-
ed at the SWX since 1998, as well.
Admission to the SWX is governed by its listing regulations. The
SWX processes applications for the listing of securities and examines
the listing prospectuses and announcements as well as compliance
with legal and regulatory requirements. There are four listing seg-
ments: the traditional general segment, the segment for investment
companies, the SWX New Market and the SWX Local Caps.
Issuers as well as the stock exchange have to comply with a large
number of provisions. This serves to protect investors and to ensure
fair and transparent trading. Such provisions include the obligation
for issuers to publish information related to the securities and the
issuer (e.g. capital events, repurchase). The SWX will request the FBC
or the respective criminal investigations authority to investigate any
case of suspected insider trading, market manipulation or other
Swiss Value Chain
The SWX has been operating an automated trading system since
1996. Through its close partnership with the SIS, the SWX is able to
provide a fully integrated value chain, the
SWX provides a fully- “Swiss Value Chain” for this trading system.
integrated value Transactions and clearing are processed by
chain – the so-called SIS automatically and in real-time. Transac-
tions are processed by simultaneous transfer
“Swiss Value Chain” .
of money and securities in the SIS or SIC sys-
tem. Furthermore, SIS SegaInterSettle enables SWX trading transac-
tions to be processed via other clearing organisations by forwarding
locked-in-trades generated at the SWX. SWX members are thus free to
hold their securities also with clearing organisations other than SIS.
45. SWX Group
The SWX Group was established in 2001. It consists of the deriva-
tives exchange EUREX, the trading platform for pan-European blue
chips virt-x, the STOXX group of indexes and the data supplier
– EUREX is the result from the merger of SOFFEX (Swiss Options and
Financial Futures Exchange) and DTB (German Futures Exchange,
Deutsche Terminbörse). Around 430 members from 16 European
countries and the USA use the derivatives exchange EUREX. EUREX
not only operates the electronic trading platform but also provides
all participants with integrated clearing for all products. EUREX is
the global leader among derivative markets.
– virt-x was founded as a Swiss-British joint enterprise by SWX Swiss
Exchange and Tradepoint Financial Networks plc. It is the first plat-
form for electronic trading in all pan-European blue chip stocks.
virt-x is headquartered in London and its operation is based on the
trading platform created by SWX Swiss Exchange. At the beginning
of 2003, SWX Swiss Exchange took control of virt-x in a public
– STOXX is a joint venture of SWX Swiss Exchange, Dow Jones & Com-
pany and German Stock Exchange (Deutsche Börse). STOXX pro-
vides a set of European indexes classified by business sectors. The
Total Market Index was launched in the autumn of the year 2000
and includes 1,200 stocks, thus covering 95 per cent of the Euro-
pean stock exchange capitalisation.
– EXFEED transmits pan-European and Swiss financial markets data in
real-time. EXFEED was founded by SWX Swiss Exchange with head-
quarters in Zurich. Since 1993, SWX Swiss Exchange has been dis-
tributing its real-time data globally via SMF (Swiss Market Feed).
46. 7 The Swiss National Bank
As an independent central bank, the SNB is responsible for the mon-
etary and currency policy. The primary aim of the SNB‘s monetary
policy is to enable the economy to fully exploit its production capac-
ities, while maintaining medium-term price stability. The SNB thus
materially shapes the settings for the development of the economy.
The Monetary Concept
Price stability is an essential prerequisite for growth and prosperity.
Inflation and deflation have undesirable effects on the distribution
of money and equally disrupt the develop-
The SNB strives to ensure ment of the economy. The SNB strives to
price stability thereby ensure price stability in the medium term and
enabling the economy to thereby to enable the economy to maximise
its production capacities.
capacities. Inflation forecasts play a key role in the
monetary concept pursued by the SNB:
– An explicit definition of price stability. The SNB equates price stabili-
ty with a rise in the national consumer price index of less than 2%
– The use of a broad-based inflation forecast as a main indicator. This
is a consensus forecast which takes into account individual indicators
such as exchange rate developments, money supply and the output
gap (i.e. the difference between actual and potential production) as
47. well as the results of various macroeconomic models. The inflation
forecast forms the basis of monetary policy decisions and is a vital
element in communication with the public.
– A target range for the 3-month Libor as an operational target for the
implementation of monetary policy.
The SNB publishes an inflation forecast every June and December,
and bases its assumptions on an unchanged 3-month Libor. Its fore-
cast thus shows how the situation were to develop if the SNB
remained inactive. If the forecast indicates, for instance, a steady rise
of inflation above 2%, the SNB would see itself compelled to act.
The SNB controls money market rates by directing the liquidity supply
of commercial banks. Current account deposits, i.e. non-interest
bearing sight deposits at the SNB, represent an essential part of the
commercial banks’ liquidity. The supply and demand for current
account deposits is balanced in the money market (interbank market).
The banks’ demand for current account deposits derives from
statutory liquidity requirements as well as the need for funding non-
cash payment transactions. The SNB controls the supply by buying or
selling the banks’ assets for Swiss francs. Repo transactions are the
most important tool for monetary policy.
The SNB bases the implementation of its monetary policy on the
interest rate levels in the money market, thereby using the 3-month
Libor (London Interbank Offered Rate) as benchmark. The SNB sets
a target range of 10 basis points for the 3-month Libor. While the
inflation forecast is indicative of the SNB’s long-term monetary policy
objectives, the interest rate range reflects the SNB’s intentions in the
short-term. The SNB reviews the interest rate range usually every
quarter and justifies any amendments. The SNB also communicates
at which level within the interest rate range it expects the 3-month
Libor to move.
Repurchase or repo agreements are the SNB’s principal monetary
instrument. The SNB has been dealing in repurchase agreements
since April 1998. Following their introduction, repurchase agree-
ments quickly became the SNB’s principal monetary instrument.
Since mid-1999, repo transactions have been the sole instrument of
implementing monetary policy.
In a repurchase agreement, the SNB purchases securities from banks
which then repurchase them on a fixed date. During the term of the
agreement, the SNB supplies its contracting party with Swiss franc
liquidity and retains the equivalent securities in its custody. The
repurchase agreement is basically a secured loan whereby the debtor
pays interest to the creditor during the life of the agreement. The
securities pledged as collateral limit the counter-party risk in a
repurchase agreement to the spread between the market value of the
collateral and the amount of the loan. This spread is assessed daily
on a mark-to-market basis and settled by a margin transfer.
48. Repurchase agreements have a number of advantages versus currency
swaps: a settlement risk is always inherent in currency swaps, as the
SNB credits the banks’ current accounts with the equivalent in Swiss
francs prior to receiving the delivery confirmation for the relevant
foreign currency amount from its correspondent bank. Furthermore,
there is a market risk throughout the life of the swap: in the event of
counter-party default coinciding with an exchange rate deteriora-
tion, the SNB has to sell the foreign currency amount at a loss. The
SNB may enter into currency swaps only with big banks which
engage in foreign exchange business. Small and medium-sized banks
now also have direct access to the SNB, as the minimum contract
amount for repurchase agreements is CHF 1 million.
Other Duties of the SNB
The SNB has the statutory monopoly for issuing bank notes. By
appointment of the Federal Government, the SNB is also responsible
for the provision of coins.
Non-Cash Payment Transactions
Swiss Interbank Clearing AG operates SIC electronic interbank clear-
ing system by appointment of the SNB. SIC is classified as an RTGS
or Real Time Gross Settlement system with a “queue” mechanism.
In the system, payments are processed individually (gross) and settled
via participants’ current accounts at the SNB. More than 220 com-
mercial banks currently settle their gross payments and part of their
bulk payments via SIC on a 24-hour basis.
Since October 1999, the SNB has been providing banks with interest
free intraday liquidity. This facility is immensely valuable at the set-
tlement of payment transactions, as it enables banks to draw Swiss
franc liquidity form the SNB for the day. The number of pending pay-
ments in SIC has been significantly reduced since the introduction of
this facility; nowadays most payments are settled before noon. The
granting of intraday liquidity has no impact on monetary policy, as
the funds are returned to the SNB within the same business day.
Creating Currency Reserves
SNB assets consist essentially of gold and currency reserves as well as
domestic financial assets (domestic securities and money market
paper). These assets form part of national assets and play a crucial
role in monetary and currency policy.
49. Part of these assets are used directly in the execution of monetary
policy: the SNB purchases assets in order to supply the economy with
central bank liquidity. Unsecured currency reserves are mainly held
in key currencies. They enable the SNB to support the Swiss franc in
the event of a currency weakness in the market.
Monitoring of the System Stability
The stability of the financial system is based primarily on the stability
of the individual market participants and an effective supervision of
banks. The latter is ensured by the Federal Banking Commission.
The SNB structures the fundamental conditions for the financial centre.
The SNB co-operates at the international level with the Internation-
al Monetary Fund (IMF), the Group of Ten (G-10) which consists of
the ten leading industrial countries and Switzerland, as well as the
BIS. The SNB also provides other central banks with technical assis-
tance and training within the framework of international co-opera-
Advisor and Banker to the Federal Government
The SNB advises the federal offices on questions of monetary and
currency policy. In addition, the SNB offers banking services to the
federal government (e.g. by issuing government bonds).
50. 8 SwissBanking –
The Swiss Bankers
Safeguarding Interests and Self-Regulation as Primary Objectives
The SBA was founded in 1912 in Basel. It is the umbrella organisa-
tion of the Swiss financial centre, counting among its members prac-
tically all banks, auditing firms and securities traders. The SBA:
– represents the interests of the banks in dealings with the authorities
in Switzerland and abroad;
– promotes Switzerland’s image as a financial centre throughout the
– fosters open dialogue with an analytical public in Switzerland and
– develops the system of self-regulation in consultation with regulatory
– supports the training of junior staff and established executives in the
– facilitates the exchange of information and knowledge between
banks and bank employees;
– co-ordinates joint projects undertaken by the Swiss banks.
Membership List Includes Auditors and Securities Traders
Banks, auditing firms and securities traders are eligible for member-
ship of the SBA. The Executive Committee of the Board of Directors
decides on the admission of new members. The SBA has now 889
member institutions (510 of which are rural credit cooperatives) and
8,330 private individuals as members. Its office employs a staff of
51. over 50. A total of 15 commissions deal with key issues affecting the
industry. Serving on these commissions alongside specialists from
the SBA itself, are 180 leading representatives of the various cate-
gories of banks.
General Assembly, Board of Directors and Office
In addition to the General Assembly, which convenes annually as
part of the Swiss Bankers Day, the SBA has the following corporate
bodies and committees: the Board of Directors, the Executive Com-
mittee of the Board of Directors, its Office, Commissions, Project
Groups and Groups of Experts.
The Board of Directors is appointed by the General Assembly and
determines the basic orientation of the Association’s activities. The
Committee appointed by the Board of Directors formulates, inter
alia, the SBA’s position within the scope of consultative procedures.
The Office takes care of the Association’s daily business and repre-
sents the SBA in dealings with other associations and public institu-
tions. Commissions deal with key issues affecting the industry. The
SBA’s main objective is to safeguard and promote an optimal envi-
ronment for the Swiss financial services industry in Switzerland and
52. 9 Categories of Banks
The Swiss banking sector includes all financial intermediaries that
are governed by the banking law. Pursuant to art. 2a of the banking
ordinance, the definition of banks which are subject to registration
includes all institutions that publicly solicit third-party money for
the purposes of safekeeping. Other criteria for the definition of
banking activities are met by institutions that
1 refinance themselves substantially by non-group banks for the pur-
pose of financing other non-group third parties, and
2 purchase or publicly offer securities in the primary market.
Institutions which are subject to the banking law are required to
submit to the SNB at regular intervals a report on their balance
sheet, income statement, equity and liquidity. The SNB generally
looks at the business activities of the parent company. This covers
the domestic head office plus the legally non-independent sub-
sidiaries in Switzerland and abroad. The SNB bank statistics covered
356 banks as at the end of 2002.
Categories of Banks as per SNB Banking Statistics
The Cantonal Banks
As from 1st October 1999 (amendment to the banking law) canton-
al banks have been defined as banks with a statutory basis under
cantonal law, with the canton holding a minimum of one-third of
53. the bank’s capital and voting rights. The state guarantee no longer
constitutes an essential characteristic of a cantonal bank.
Cantonal banks may be established either as public institutions or
public limited companies. Eighteen of the 24 cantonal banks are
public legal entities in their own right. Five cantonal banks are
mixed stock companies: Banque Cantonale Vaudoise, Zuger Kan-
tonalbank, Banque Cantonale du Jura, Banque Cantonale du Valais
and Banque Cantonale de Genève. The Cantonal Bank of Berne has
been a private stock company since 1998.
The number of cantonal banks was reduced from 29 in 1999 to 24 as
at the end of 1997. The mergers between the two respective cantonal
banks of the cantons of Berne (1990), Geneva (1994) and Vaud
(1996) contributed to this decline; at the end of 1994, the Solothurn-
er Bank, a subsidiary of the former Swiss Bank Corporation,
acquired the majority shareholding in the former Solothurner Kan-
tonalbank; and Union Bank of Switzerland (today’s UBS AG) took
over the Appenzell-Ausserrhodische Kantonalbank in early 1996.
A cantonal bank’s total assets range from CHF 1bn to CHF 58 bn.
The smaller cantonal banks concentrate on savings and mortgage
business, while the larger ones offer a wide range of services and are
basically no different from the average full-service bank.
The Big Banks
Following the merger between Union Bank of Switzerland and Swiss
Bank Corporation announced in November 1997 and implemented
in June 1998, there are now only two big banks in Switzerland: UBS
AG and Credit Suisse Group.
A strong international focus and business network is a characteristic
shared by both big banks. The UBS Group employs around 40,000
people outside Switzerland, approximately 28,000 of whom are in
the United States. This means that more than half of the Group’s
staff work outside Switzerland. The number is even higher for the
Credit Suisse Group, with two-thirds of its staff, or 54,000 people,
based abroad. The big banks also have a global network of branches
and subsidiaries with offices on five continents. Being universal
banks, the big banks maintain a tight network of around 600
The core business of the big banks comprises asset management and
investment advisory services for private and institutional investors,
investment banking (underwriting, mergers and acquisition, lever-
aged finance, privatisation, equity and interest rate products includ-
ing derivatives, foreign exchange) as well as private and corporate
customer business. In addition the CS Group provides insurance
services to private and institutional customers through its Win-
terthur Group. As at the end of 2002, the big banks accounted for
64% of the combined balance sheets totals of all banks, and 35% of
the overall domestic loan business (mortgages and receivables from
The regional banks operate in similar business areas to the small
cantonal bans, since they focus their activities on the savings and
mortgage sectors. At the end of 2002, around half of amounts due to
54. customers took the form of savings deposits and investments; mort-
gage loans accounted for three-quarters of assets.
Most regional bans are members of the Swiss regional banks’ asso-
ciation (RBA). At the end of 2002, RBA Holding counted among its
members 81 regional banks with a combined balance sheet total of
CHF 53 bn, and employing around 3,100 people. The members of
RBA undertake to co-operate closely under a structure comprising
various RBA Holding subsidiaries. RBA Holding took over the joint
organisations and systems (clearing centre, underwriting centre and
investment centre). RBA Finanz ensures that its shareholding banks
comply with defined quality standards. RBA Service is in charge of
uniform information technology operations. RBA Zentralbank con-
solidates business volumes and provides the joint funds required by
the RBA banks, in particular in the areas of interbank, trading and
Luzerner Regiobank, IRB Interregion Bank and Valiant Bank merged
in December 2002 to form jointly the Valiant Holding. In terms of
balance sheet total, Valiant Holding thus figures among Switzer-
land’s 15 largest banks. 32 small and medium-sized RBA banks with
a combined balance sheet total of CHF 14 bn, have decided to co-
operate more closely under the Clientis contract-based group of
affiliated companies. Clientis is expected to start operations in 2004.
The Schweizer Verband der Raiffeisenbanken, the Raiffeisen banks’
association, has 493 independent members. These banks are mostly
located in rural areas and structured as co-operatives. The co-oper-
atives have around 1 million members who hold participation cer-
tificates and are thus joint owners of the Raiffeisen banks. The
banking activities of the individual institutions are restricted to local
banking business. Their core business consists of mortgage, agricul-
tural and commercial lending to members. They also accept deposits
from non-members. The group avails itself of external insurance
services and investment funds (Helvetia Patria Insurance and Bank
Vontobel) and has entered into a partnership with cosba private
banking ag for the purpose of co-operation in the area of asset man-
The Schweizer Verband der Raiffeisenbanken in St. Gallen (with
offices in Lausanne and Bellinzona) informs and supports its mem-
bers in the areas of marketing, information technology, personnel
and legal services. It also operates the central auditing unit which
provides the individual banks with auditing services, as required by
SBL. The joint central bank based in St. Gallen provides clearing and
cash management services to the members of the association.
The 15 private bankers are among the oldest institutions in Switzer-
land. Most of them were founded in the 18th century. Private bankers
primarily engage in asset management and banking services related
thereto (underwriting and fiduciary business, securities trading).
Private bankers are structured as individual companies, joint com-
panies or limited partnerships and their owners have unlimited pri-
55. vate liability in respect of their own personal assets. Since they do
not solicit deposits from third parties, private bankers do not have
to publish annual financial statements. However, they are subject to
all other provisions of SBL, in particular requirements in respect of
This category of banks subsumes a variety of institutions: stock
exchange and securities banks, institutions specialising in asset man-
agement, as well as institutions engaging in personal loans instal-
ment contracts and consumer credits. 122 foreign-controlled banks
also form part of this group. They engage mainly in asset manage-
ment for private customers (private banking). Most foreign banks in
Switzerland are branches or subsidiaries of banks based in the EU
and EEA (97). Other European countries and Israel operate 11 banks
in Switzerland, and the USA and Canada 21.
Non-Bank Financial Intermediaries
In addition to banks and their joint organisations and systems, the
Swiss financial centre also accommodates non-bank financial inter-
mediaries. Financial companies subject to specific federal supervision
include in particular managers of Swiss investment funds (Invest-
ment Fund Law), life insurance companies (Insurance Supervision
Law) and securities traders (Stock Exchange Law). There are also a
number of other finance companies subject only to the Anti-Money
Laundering Act. These include all such entities that accept assets
from third parties on a professional basis for safe custody or assist
in the investment and transfer of assets (e.g. asset managers, brokers,
exchange offices, lawyers, credit card companies).
In particular, there are a great many, important independent asset
managers. Their interests are safeguarded by the Swiss Association
of Asset Managers (SAAM). The assets managed by SAAM members
are estimated to account for ca. 8% of the entire Swiss asset man-
agement market. Independent asset managers work closely with one
or several banks which operate accounts and custody accounts for
PostFinance is another financial intermediary. As one of the Swiss
Post Office’s business areas, it is part of an independent federal insti-
tution. The Swiss Post Office offers selected financial services via
PostFinance (e.g. investment funds and insurance), partly in co-
operation with external partners. In addition to its traditional prod-
ucts (payments, investments and pension plans), PostFinance has
been striving for some time to build up financing services. In this
vein, PostFinance has been co-operating with UBS AG since May
2003 in providing mortgages to finance home ownership for the cus-
tomers’ personal use.
56. 10 Selection of Basic
and Advanced Literature
Abegg, Philipp, et al.
Schweizerisches Bankenrecht. Ein Lehr- und Handbuch
für Bankfachleute; published by SBVg, Compendio Bildungsmedien
Banken und Finanzintermediäre, S. 269–304 in: Handbuch der
Volkswirtschaftslehre, Bd. 1. Springer. 1996.
Bank for International Settlements.
Incentive structures in institutional asset management and
their implications for financial markets. Report submitted by a
Working Group established by the Committee on the Global
Financial System. Basel, March 2003.
Towards an Understanding of the Changing Structure of Financial
Intermediation. An evolutionary Theory of Institutional survival.
SUERF Studies No. 4. Amsterdam 1998.
Boemle, Max, et al.
Geld-, Bank- und Finanzmarkt-Lexikon der Schweiz.
Verlag SKV, Zürich 2002.
Committee on Payment and Settlement Systems (CPSS).
Core Principles for Systemically Important Payment Systems.
Basel, January 2001.
57. Danthine, Jean-Pierre et al.
The Future of European Banking. Centre of Economic Policy Research.
Den Otter, Mathäus.
Investmentfonds. Grundlagen, Risiken, Chancen.
Zürich. NZZ, 1999.
Dietzi, Hanspeter, Latour, Sandra.
Schweizerisches Börsenrecht. Ein Grundriss mit ausgewählten
Helbing & Lichtenhahn, Basel 2002.
Eidg. Departement für auswärtige Angelegenheiten,
Finanzplatz Schweiz. Übersicht über wichtige Themenbereiche und
Eintwicklungen im Finanzbereich. Juni 2003.
Geldwäscherei in der Schweiz. Oktober 2002.
European Central Bank.
Blue Book. Payment and Securities Settlement Systems in the Euro-
pean Union. June 2001.
European Central Bank.
Possible Effects of EMU on the EU Banking System in the Medium
and Long Term. February 1999
European Central Bank.
The Effects of Technology on the EU Banking System. July 1999.
Group of Ten.
Consolidation in the Financial Sector. IMF, Washington; OECD,
Paris; BIS, Basel. January 2001
Die volkswirtschaftliche Bedeutung des Finanzsystems,
S. 3–37 in: Obst, Georg; Hintner, Otto: Geld-, Bank- und Börsenwesen.
Handbuch des Finanzsystems. 40.,
überarb. Aufl. Schäffer-Poeschel. 2000.
Schweizerische Bankenpolitik. 5. voll. überarbeitete Aufl. Bern 2003.
Klein, Fristz; Palazzo, Guido.
Kulturgeschichte des Geldflusses. Die Entwicklung des
Zahlungsverkehrs mit Fokus Schweiz. Verlag SKV, Zürich 2003.
Lambelet, Jean-Christian; Mihailow Alexander.
Le poids des places financières suisse, genevoise et lémanique.
Institut Créa, Décembre 2001.
58. Lannoo, Karel.
Challenges to the Structure of Financial Supervision in the EU.
CEPS Working Party Report. Brussels, July 2000.
EU Securities Market Regulation. Adapting to the Needs of a Single
Capital Market. Report of a CEPS Task Force.
Brussels, March 2001.
The Economic Rationale for Banking Regulation. Financial Services
Authority. Occasional Paper. London. April 1999.
Trends and Developments in Securitisation.
In: OECD. Financial Market Trends No. 74. Paris, October 1999.
Schweizerisches Finanzmarktrecht. Einführung und Überblick.
Bern. Stämpfli, 1997.
Pan-European Asset Management.
Achievements and Regulatory Impedements.
CEPS Task Force Report No. 44, April 2003.
Swiss Banking – ein Programm für die Zukunft. Februar 2003.
Thévenoz, Luc, Urs Zulauf (Hrsg.).
Bank- und Finanzmarktrecht 2003.
BF 2003. Regulierung und Selbstregulierung der Banken, Börsen,
Effektenhändler, Anlagefonds und Finanzmärkte in der Schweiz.
Zürich. Schulthess, 2003.
The Coming Transformation of Continental European Banking?
BIS Working Paper No. 54., June 1998.
Banken- und Börsenaufsichtsrecht. Aspekte des öffentlichen Bank-
und Kapitalmarktrechts in der Schweiz.
Helbing & Lichtenhahn, Basel 2000.
59. Internet Addresses
Association of Swiss Asset Managers
(the content of this website is not available in English)
(the content of this website is not available in English)
Financial Market Regulation
List of Central Banks
List of Supervisory Authorities
Money Laundering Control Authority
Place Financière Genève
(the content of this website is not available in English)
Swiss Bankers Association, Basel
and Gottschalk+ Ash Int’l
Gottschalk+ Ash Int’l
Swiss Bankers Association
Typesetting and printing
Compendium 2004 is also
available in German and French
61. Swiss Bankers Association
PO Box 4182
T + 41 61 295 93 93
F + 41 61 272 53 82