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Economy and Banking Sector of Switzerland

Financial System Development

Financial System
89.7, 4th out of 144 countries
Banks' Soundness
85.7, 8th out of 144 countries

According to World Economic Forum's Global Competitiveness Report 2019, financial market development in Switzerland is scored 89.7 out of maximum 100.0 and ranked 4th out of 144 analysed economies.

Financial Market Development in Switzerland.

Chart 1. Financial Market Development in Switzerland. Source: WEF.


Soundness of banks is scored 6.1 bringing Switzerland into the 8th place.

Soundness of Banks in Switzerland.

Chart 2. Soundness of Banks in Switzerland. Source: WEF.

Further Information

Banking Focus

Banks in Switzerland are mainly focused on the following areas:

  • regional retail banking
  • private banking
  • asset management

Banking Supervision

Schweizerische Nationalbank

Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority

Banking Sector Structure

Number of Banks
252
Consolidated Assets (2017)
3,249.40 bln CHF  (+4.79%)
Recent Changes (2018)
new banks: 1, closed banks: 9

Currently there are 252 credit institutions operating in Switzerland.

In 2017 consolidated banking assets in Switzerland were 3,249.40 bln CHF. The consolidated banking assets' evolution is shown at Chart 3 below.

Consolidated banking assets in Switzerland.

Chart 3. Consolidated banking assets in Switzerland.

Recent structural changes (2013 - 2018) of the banking sector of Switzerland are summarised in Table 1.

201320142015201620172018
Number of Opened Banks225211
Number of Closed Banks16815799

Table 1. Recent structural changes in the banking sector of Switzerland.

The list of the most recently opened banks in Switzerland is provided in Table 2.

All the credit institutions operating in Switzerland can be classified into several categories. Table 3 summarises the number of banks in each category.

CategoryNumber of Banks
Big banks4
Branches of foreign banks23
Cantonal banks24
Central banks1
Foreign-controlled banks70
Institutions with a special field of business5
Other banks16
Private bankers who do not actively seek deposits from the public5
Raiffeisen banks1
Regional banks and savings banks60
Stock exchange banks43

Table 3. Number of banks by category in Switzerland.

Deposit Guarantee Scheme

Maximum Protected Amount
100,000 CHF

Deposit guarantee scheme is a financial stability mechanism implemented in many countries to protect bank depositors against the loss of their deposits in the case when a bank is unable to meet its obligations to depositors by compensating certain deposits held by depositors of the bank. This compensation is paid out from the contributions which banks have made into a deposit guarantee fund.

From a depositor's point of view it is important to know:

  • if the depositor is eligible within the terms of the deposit guarantee scheme;
  • if the depositor's bank is a participant in the deposit guarantee scheme;
  • if the depositor's type of deposit is covered by the deposit guarantee scheme.

All these details about deposit guarantee scheme in Switzerland are summarised in Table 4.

Maximum Protected Amount
100,000 CHF
Scheme Participants
all credit institutions operating in Switzerland (including branches of foreign banks)
branches of Swiss banks abroad
Eligible Depositors
private individuals
  • Swiss residents
  • Swiss citizens
  • foreign residents
  • foreign citizens
legal entities
  • registered in Switzerland
  • registered abroad
Non-Eligible Depositors
financial institutions
Covered Accounts
credit balances, e.g.
  • personal accounts
  • savings accounts
  • investment accounts
  • salary accounts
  • numbered accounts
  • deposit accounts
  • current accounts
Covered Currencies
all currencies, namely
  • CHF (Swiss franc)
  • foreign currencies
Paid In Currency
CHF

Table 4. Deposit guarantee scheme in Switzerland.

Further Information

Country Ceiling for Deposits

Moody's country ceilings for deposits specify the highest rating that can be assigned to local- or foreign- currency denominated deposit obligations of a bank or other deposit taking institution domiciled within that country.

Local Currency (Swiss franc)
Aaa (prime)
Foreign Currency
Aaa (prime)

Local currency (Swiss franc) deposit ceiling for Switzerland is set to Aaa (prime), foreign currency deposit ceiling is Aaa (prime).