Swiss private bank frey gives up after pressure from the usa

Swiss private bank frey gives up after pressure from the usa

The end of the bank frey, founded in 2002, was decided by an extraordinary meeting of shareholders, as the zurich financial institution announced thursday evening on its website. In march, the swiss bank wegelin had already ceased operations after a conviction in the u.S.

The bank frey referred to "hardly bearable conditions" as a result of the tax dispute with the USA. In april, the head of the bank’s private customer business frey was indicted on suspicion of aiding and abetting tax evasion.

Once again, "a small bank that comes under the scrutiny of U.S. Tax investigators can very quickly find itself in a situation that threatens its very existence," the "neue zurcher zeitung" wrote on friday. Then "giving up business is the best alternative for customers and shareholders".

In september, after long negotiations, switzerland approved an agreement with the u.S. Under which its banks can buy their way out of prosecution in exchange for millions of dollars in bribes and the delivery of tax data on american customers. Otherwise, they face not only legal proceedings, but also exclusion from the lucrative u.S. Financial market. However, money houses that have already been involved in proceedings in U.S. Courts are exempt from the relief trade.

From an american point of view, it is particularly serious that bank frey is said to have accepted untaxed money from american customers when other swiss banks had long since stopped such black money practices, the "neue zurcher zeitung" reports. Of the two billion francs (1.62 billion euros) in assets under management at bank frey as of september 2012, 44 percent were held by U.S. Clients.

In march, the 1741 in st. Gallen founded bank wegelin ceased operations after being sentenced in the u.S. To a 74 million dollar fine for aiding tax evasion. However, wegelin’s business outside the USA – and thus the bulk of its activities – had previously been transferred to notenstein privatbank, which was taken over by raiffeisen schweiz.

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