The Swiss National Bank (SNB) made a loss of SFr8.5 billion ($8.72 billion) during the first nine months of this year, blaming it mainly on exchange rate losses.
However, the central bank said in a statement that earnings on foreign currency investments as well as valuation gains on gold and the stabilisation fund it set up to bolster Swiss bank UBS all had a positive impact on the result.
It noted that the appreciation of the Swiss franc had led to exchange rate losses totalling SFr21.2 billion.
The main investment currencies “lost considerable ground” against the Swiss franc with the euro trading 10.3 per cent lower on the balance sheet date than at the end of 2009 and the United States dollar declining 5.54 per cent in the same period.
The statement added that the SNB depended largely on developments in the gold, foreign exchange and capital markets and therefore strong fluctuations were “normal”.
Switzerland’s central bank still holds 1,040 tons of gold in the form of currency reserves. At the end of the third quarter, the price per kilo was SFr41.071, resulting in a valuation gain of SFr4.6 billion.
swissinfo.ch and agencies