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Opening offshore bank accounts, protection, confidence, privacy, Latvia, Switzerland, Caribe - Saint Vincent offshore banking.

Guide to open Swiss Bank Accounts for non residents


 


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Banking in Switzerland

 

Banking in Switzerland is characterized by stability, privacy and protection of clients' assets and information. The country's tradition of bank secrecy, which dates to the Middle Ages, was first codified in a 1934 law. All banks in Switzerland are regulated by the Federal Banking Commission (FBC), which derives its authority from a series of federal statutes.

Overview
Switzerland is an economically advanced and prosperous nation, with a gross domestic product (GDP) larger than that of some larger western European nations. In addition, the value of the Swiss franc (CHF) has been relatively stable compared to that of other currencies.In 2003, the financial sector comprised an estimated 14% of Switzerland's GDP and employed approximately 180,000 people (110,000 of whom work in the banking sector); this represents about 5.6% of the total Swiss workforce.

Swiss neutrality and national sovereignty, long recognized by foreign nations, have fostered a stable environment in which the banking sector was able to develop and thrive. Even though it is near Europe's geographical center, Switzerland maintained neutrality through both World Wars; is not a member of the European Union or the European Economic Area; and was not even a member of the United Nations until 2002.

As of 2003, an estimated one-third of all funds held outside their country of origin (sometimes called "offshore" funds) are kept in Switzerland. However, this number fell significantly in 2002; the total amount of private money managed by Swiss banks was $2.2 trillion, which is $400 billion less than a year earlier. This has been attributed to both a bear market and possibly to stricter regulations on Swiss banking.

The Bank of International Settlements, an organization that facilitates cooperation among the world's central banks, is headquartered in the city of Basel. Founded in 1930, the BIS chose to locate in Switzerland because of the country's neutrality, which was important to an organization founded by countries that had been on both sides of World War I. Offshore Bank accounts

Foreign banks operating in Switzerland manage 870 billion Swiss francs worth of assets (as of May 2006.)

Law and Regulation
The Federal Banking Commission, an independent agency of the Swiss government within the Federal Department of Finance, supervises most banking-related activities as well as securities markets and investment funds.Regulatory authority is derived from several statutes.

The office of the Swiss Banking Ombudsman, founded in 1993, is sponsored by the Swiss Banking Ombudsman Foundation, which was established by the Swiss Bankers Association. The ombudsman's services, which are offered free of charge, include mediation and assistance to persons searching for dormant assets. The ombudsman handles about 1,500 complaints raised against banks yearly.

Statutes

Banking law of 1934


The Swiss Parliament passed the Banking Law of 1934, which codified the rules of secrecy and criminalizes violation of it. The secrecy provisions were not included in the first draft of the law, which mainly concerned administrative matters such as bank supervision. The provisions, found in Article 47(b), were added before passage of the bill due to Nazi authorities' attempts to investigate the assets of Jews and "enemies of the state" held in Switzerland.
 
Recent statutes
A new banking law entered into force on 1 January 1995. The law permits foreign banks to open subsidiaries, branches, or representative offices in Switzerland without approval by the FBC. This opportunity is based upon reciprocity, and requires a prior agreement between Switzerland and foreign governments. The new law also requires banks to announce any acquisition or sale of its shares by a major shareholder (minimum 10% of capital or voting rights) to the FBC (shareholders engaging in such activity must notify the bank). The bank can also hold major shareholders of a bank liable for improper conduct. To enforce compliance with these shareholder requirements, the FBC is authorized to block their voting rights if they fail to comply. In addition, the FBC can now provide information to foreign law enforcement authorities in cases covered by mutual legal assistance agreements.

Electronic payments
Swiss banks, as well as the post office (which handles some financial transactions) use an electronic payments system known as Swiss Interbank Clearing (SIC). The system is supervised by the Swiss National Bank and is operated via a joint venture. SIC handled over 250 million transactions in 2005, with a turnover value of 41 trillion Swiss francs.

The most important banks in Switzerland

Now that you have the basic information about Swiss Banking you can order our guide to open Swiss Bank account online.

 

 

 

 

Content of the Guide - Option 1 Swiss Savings Bank Account - Option 2 Swiss Trading Bank account - Option 3 Swiss Current Checking and Investment Bank account - Option 4 Swiss Bank account for Europeans - Other Options UBS Credit Suisse & Private Banks - Order form - Contact us - Money Safe Box - Guide to open UK bank account for non resident.

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More Information to get well acquaintance about Swiss Banking:


Banking in Switzerland - Frecuently Asked Question about Swiss Banking opening of account - Bank client confidentiality and Bank secrecy - Swiss Financial Center and Bank groups - List of Swiss Banks - A little country. A great financial centre

Other Offshore Banking countries guides: Caribbean Bank Account - Offshore Banking at Isle of man

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