Current Account Surpluses and the Interest Rate Island in Switzerland
This paper describes some long-run aspects of the Swiss balance of payments, highlighting two macroeconomic phenomena that make Switzerland stand out among other countries: first, it has had a persistent current account surplus and the largest ratio of net foreign assets to GDP in the world; second, its real interest rates have been significantly lower than those of most other industrialized countries, earning it the label “interest rate island”. These two distinctive features may be related, and ultimately both may result from an excess of national savings over investment for many years. The real interest differential may largely be attributed to a foreign exchange rate risk premium, which compensates Swiss residents for holding net assets in foreign currency and foreign residents for bearing net liabilities in Swiss francs.
|Date of creation:||01 Feb 1995|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Phone: (202) 623-7000
Fax: (202) 623-4661
Web page: http://www.imf.org/external/pubind.htmEmail:
More information through EDIRC
|Order Information:||Web: http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/pubs/ord_info.htm|
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:95/24. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Jim Beardow)or (Hassan Zaidi)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.