The End of Swiss Banking Secrecy ?
The Swiss government proposed bill to allow banks to share clients data with the U.S. received a setback with the parliamentary committee rejection of the draft.
Today’s vote by the upper house will probably decide the future of Swiss banking secrecy. Both bankers and Cantonal financial directors are supporting the agreement as a rejection could lead to criminal indictments for some Swiss banks with obviously a very bad impact to business.
With very limited information available it is however clear that one of the historical competitive advantages of Swiss banks is going to be impacted. The main issue is if the acceptance of some unilateral conditions will set an important precedence that might lead to the end of Swiss banking secrecy.
In my view several Swiss major banks have already adapted their business model by leveraging their competitiveness on security and stability and by refocusing on high growth area like Asia but with a very fierce competition the loss of secrecy might have a negative impact to business.
A recent drop on several Swiss banks might still be a buying opportunity, especially for these banks that have already successfully changed their business model.