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Smaller banks are most profitable

The smaller cantonal banks are the most profitable in Switzerland, according to rankings published by the business magazine, Bilanz.

The cantonal bank of tiny Schaffhausen in northern Switzerland is the best performer, while the banks of Vaud and Geneva remain firmly at the bottom of the list.

The rankings are based on 12 indicators, such as profit margins and turnover per employee.

The cantonal bank of Schwyz has an impressive profit margin of 60.62 per cent compared with 39.28 per cent for the Vaud bank and 38.18 per cent for Zurich cantonal bank.

The two biggest cantonal banks – of Zurich and Vaud – which are also Switzerland’s third and fourth largest, scored badly overall: Zurich’s came 20th and Vaud’s 23rd out of 24 banks.

Geneva’s was worst of all. At the end of last year, it had bad debts of more than SFr5 billion, forcing the cantonal government to impose a raft of rehabilitation measures.

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR