Tuesday 20 March 2018

Tony Paterson: Swiss franc feeling the pressure of uncertainty in Greece

Tony Paterson

The promenades of Geneva and Zurich may seem a world away from the protests and turmoil plaguing the streets of Athens. But with the European sovereign debt crisis going rapidly from bad to worse, concerns are growing about the economic impact on Switzerland if the Greeks ditch the euro.

The biggest fear is over the ever-reliable Swiss franc. Last year, the mayhem in the 17-member euro area drove up the value of the Swiss currency, threatening the country's economy. Increasing pressure on the franc adversely affected Swiss exports and led to a marked decline in tourism.

The currency rise was only halted after the Swiss national bank intervened to peg its value against the euro.

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