Avenir Suisse backs a free trade agreement between Switzerland and the United States in a new report. Jennifer Anthamatten, one of the co-authors, explains what the gains would be—including for politics—and tells us how agriculture and climate change fit into the equation.


Ken Fisher: ECB stimulus is „quantitative diseasing, not easing”
The ECB’s decision to relaunch its bond purchasing program is “quantitative diseasing, not quantitative easing.” This according to Ken Fisher, investor and founder of Fisher Investments, who warns that the move will set back the European economy rather than support it.

Pension reform for top earners
Despite systematic problems and a negative interest rate environment, people should put savings in the pension system as early as possible, says Werner Rutsch, head of institutional business at AXA Investment Managers. A change in regulation will help people with higher incomes to decide on their investment strategy.

Slight ECB rate cut brings relief to Switzerland’s central bank
The European Central Bank announced a fresh stimulus package and cut its deposit rate by 10 basis points today, as it looks to support the eurozone economy. But this small adjustment, says Stefan Gerlach, EFG Bank chief economist, is likely to have a “minimal effect” for the SNB, bringing some relief ahead of its next meeting.

Swiss Bankers Association to lead debate on negative rates
Swiss banks are feeling the pain from five years of negative interest rates. Swiss Bankers Association CEO Jörg Gasser says the organization will lead the debate to try come up with a sustainable solution. “They are approaching the limit,” says Gasser, “and therefore the question needs to be tackled very seriously.”

Pension survey paints worrying picture for Swiss
One in four Swiss don’t have a private pension plan yet many still want to retire early, according to a survey carried out on behalf of Raiffeisen. The findings, published Thursday, show it’s time to reform the country’s “rigid” three-pillar system, says Tashi Gumbatshang, head of asset and pension planning at the cooperative bank.

Alpiq delisting faces resistance from activist investors

Activist investors are putting up a fight against Alpiq’s majority owners, holding onto the last remaining shares that would allow them to take the energy company private. Eugen Perger, senior analyst at Research Partners, warns that in the worst-case scenario, the impasse could lead to the issue having to be resolved in court.