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Ukraine war no threat to Swiss banks, says financial watchdog

Angehrn and Amstad at news conference
Angehrn (left) and Amstad stressed that stability of the Swiss financial institutions is key for digitalisation and sustainability of the banking sector. © Keystone/Anthony Anex

Switzerland’s financial market supervisor FINMA says the Russian invasion of Ukraine isn’t a wide-scale threat to Swiss financial firms’ business ties to Russia.

FINMAExternal link’s chief executive Urban Angehrn said that, overall, the immediate effects of risks to the financial centre were manageable and Swiss firms’ business relations to Russia were “not insignificant”.

However, Angehrn told a news conference on Tuesday that the war in Ukraine “poses numerous risks for the Swiss financial sector and accentuated risks for individual institutions”.

Angehrn, who took up his post at FINMA in November, said the watchdog was continuing to monitor the situation to see whether the war was having an impact on the financial markets.

FINMA’s president, Marlene Amstad, said the stability of Switzerland’s financial institutions was generally good.

The watchdog conducted 650 investigations and 20 enforcement proceedings last year to impose the financial market law.

It said it dealt with complex cases of money laundering as well as deficiencies in corporate governance.

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR