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New chief to watch over Swiss financial sector

The cabinet has named a new head of the Swiss Financial Markets Supervisory Authority (Finma), the only body that enforces laws over the financial industry.

Anne Héritier Lachat will assume the post in January, the government said on Wednesday. She replaces Eugen Haltiner, who will step down at the end of 2010, one year before the term expires.

Héritier Lachat, 60, has served on the Finma board since 2008, and is a part-time law professor at Geneva University who specialises in banking and financial regulations.

She will leave her teaching posts at the end of the first quarter of 2011 and her legal practice in January.

Finma and its boss Haltiner, a former UBS manager, came under pressure in 2009 for ordering the release of confidential account information on UBS bank clients as part of a legal settlement with United States tax authorities hunting for undeclared assets.

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR