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International Financial Centres after the Global Financial Crisis and Brexit$
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Youssef Cassis and Dariusz Wójcik

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780198817314

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198817314.001.0001

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Zurich and Geneva

Zurich and Geneva

The End of the Golden Age

(p.106) 6 Zurich and Geneva
International Financial Centres after the Global Financial Crisis and Brexit

Tobias Straumann

Oxford University Press

The Global Financial Crisis has had a strong negative effect on Zurich and Geneva by ending banking secrecy for foreign clients. The reason for this historical break was the rapid rise of public debt in the wake of the crisis which prompted major EU countries and the United States to intensify their fight against financial centres profiting from tax evasion. As Zurich and Geneva have always had other comparative advantages besides banking secrecy, they are likely to remain important hubs in the international financial geography. But there is no doubt that their golden age has come to an end. Brexit and fintech are unlikely to provide opportunities to reverse the relative decline, since Switzerland is not part of the EU and the Eurozone and does not have the economic size required to be a first mover in developing basic innovations.

Keywords:   Switzerland, Zurich, Geneva, EU, United States, banking crisis, public debt, tax evasion, banking secrecy

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