Switzerland is not manipulating its currency, Jorg Gasser, the country’s state secretary for international financial matters, told CNBC’s “Street Signs” on Tuesday.
That followed Switzerland being named last week as one of six countries on the “monitoring list” in the U.S. Treasury’s semi-annual currency report on potential foreign-exchange manipulators.
Switzerland met two of the three criteria to be named a manipulator, both in the most recent report and the previous one in October: It runs a material current account surplus and it engages in persistent, one-sided intervention in foreign exchange markets.
It did not meet the third criterion of running a bilateral trade surplus with the U.S. of at least $20 billion.
The U.S. Treasury estimated that Switzerland’s central bank purchased a net $66 billion of foreign exchange in euros in 2016, with $20 billion purchased in June after the U.K. referendum to exit the eurozone.
Gasser noted that Switzerland had discussed the matter with the previous U.S. administration for “quite some years.”