Swiss Banks Start Agreeing to the US Tax Deal

The first Swiss banks have signaled their readiness to work with U.S. officials in a crackdown on wealthy Americans evading taxes and many more are expected to follow in the coming weeks, in the latest blow to Switzerland’s cherished bank secrecy.

The deal between the United States and Switzerland, agreed in August, is part of a U.S. drive to lift the veil of Swiss bank secrecy. In 2009, this led to UBS paying $780 million in a settlement where the bank agreed to hand over U.S. client names with secret Swiss accounts.

The U.S. pursuit of tax dollars sheltered in offshore accounts has piled pressure on Switzerland, the world’s largest offshore finance center with more than $2 trillion in assets.

The Swiss government in June bowed to repeated attacks on banking secrecy, deeply embedded in the country’s culture, and will share data on foreign depositors if a global standard is established.

Under this latest U.S. deal, Swiss banks were given until Monday by their regulator to say whether they would take part in the government-brokered program open to a host of second-tier Swiss banks.

via CNBC

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Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He has been published by The MarketWatch, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Globe and Mail, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Bloomberg and BNN. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza