The Swiss central bank returned to a profit in the second quarter from a year earlier, helped by gains on its foreign-currency positions and gold holdings.
The profit of 8.2 billion francs ($8.4 billion) compares with a loss of 12.7 billion francs in the year-earlier period, the Swiss National Bank said in an e-mailed statement today. Foreign currency positions contributed with a profit of 7.7 billion francs after a loss of 11.5 billion francs in the previous year. The SNB earned 502.3 million francs on gold holdings after a loss of 1.6 billion francs.
â€œThe SNB result depends largely on developments in the gold, foreign-exchange and capital markets,â€ the central bank said. â€œStrong fluctuations are normal and only provisional conclusions are possible as regards the annual result.â€
The franc was little changed after the release and traded at 1.2011 against the euro at 10:39 a.m. in Zurich. Against the dollar, it was at 97.93 centimes.
The Zurich-based central bank has been forced to purchase foreign currencies to defend its franc ceiling of 1.20 per euro imposed in September to fight deflation threats and help exporters. SNB President Thomas Jordan said on July 3 the central bank is â€œready to enforce the minimum exchange rate with unlimited purchases of foreign currencies, if needed.â€
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