Swiss interest rates to remain negative for the time being
The Swiss National Bank (SNB) plans to keep interest rates in negative territory for the foreseeable future.
SNB chairman Thomas Jordan says the central bank is concentrating on stabilizing the franc.
The SNB set interest rates at - 0.75% in January 2015 and have kept them the same ever since.
The aim is to deter foreign investors from piling their cash into Swiss francs, thus keeping the franc from appreciating too far.
Thomas Jordan said global economic conditions did not point to an easing of interest rates any time soon.
While this may sooth Swiss exporters, banks say they are feeling the squeeze of being charged to keep cash deposits.
According to filings released in September, the SNB has charged banks CHF1.1 billion for the privilege of keeping cash holdings at the central bank since January 22, 2015.
The Alternative Bank Switzerland has decided to pass on the cost of negative interest rates to clients, while earlier this month Post Finance said it would charge customers with at least CHF1 million in their accounts.