Bern tightens measures for Russian banks

BERN, SWITZERLAND – The Swiss government 27 August announced tighter restrictions for Russian banks operating in the country, “ensure that the most recent sanctions imposed by the European Union cannot be circumvented via Swiss territory. Today the Federal Council decided on the necessary measures. In the field of finance, issues of long term financial instruments […]

Skating star Lambiel opens school in Alps

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Swiss skating star Stéphane Lambiel Wednesday inaugurated his artistic skating school in Champéry, in the Vaud Alps. The 30-year-old Lambiel, who holds two World Champion titles and a silver medal from the Torino Olympics, will continue to perform in Art on Ice, while training a dozen students at the new school.

Youths arrested for putting cement on rail tracks

Intercity train tracks, shot while heading from Zurich to Neuchatel Tuesday

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Rail traffic was interrupted for a while Sunday and again Tuesday on the Bern-Zurich line following an incident that resulted in the arrests of five youths – but no one was injured, say police. The five were caught Tuesday shortly after they placed concrete slabs on the Intercity train line between Bern […]

Swiss real estate bubble shrinks, prices remain high

Critical districts, real estate, potential for a bubble. Source: Comparis/ETH

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – The danger of a Swiss real estate bubble is easing, but prices remain high in many areas, notably in Geneva and Zurich. The data comes from the most recent of four surveys of the Swiss real estate market by Comparis and ETH in Zurich. Comparis is a consumer price comparison group; ETH […]

Zurich airport profits up sharply

Zurich airport continues to win awards for service, with its most recent the World Travel Award in early August.

Year-on-year turnover down ZURICH, SWITZERLAND – Zurich airport saw an eight-fold increase in profits for the first half of 2014, compared to a year earlier, the company said 27 August: CHF88.13 million compared to CHF10.1m. The airport’s turnover was down, however, by 3.4 percent to CHF453.58m. Passenger traffic continued to grow, by 0.5 percent, with […]

News roundup: banks’ money, mafia guns, Alpine golf, revenge

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Just back from three days of covering a wine fair in Zurich, which you can soon read about on Ellen’s Wine World. Local news roundup for the first part of the week: Swiss private banks reveal numbers Geneva-based bank Pictet 26 August published its financial figures for the first time in 209 […]

Breaking news: Hamas, Israel “long-term” truce

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Hamas officials say a long-term truce with Israel has been agreed to, and an announcement with details will be made shortly. Egyptian officials are reportedly saying the official announcement will be at 20:00 local time. Breaking news details: Aljazeera, BBC, Jerusalem Post, Reuters

Safety council calls for more speed checks

controles-vitesse-hors-localites

BERN, SWITZERLAND – The bfu, Switzerland’s council for accident prevention, is calling for more road speed checks. The group in a statement 26 August points out that a decrease in the number of serious accidents in Switzerland is directly linked to the number of speed checks, but that unfortunately the areas with the fewest checks, […]

Driver stopped near Sion: 3.38 alcohol level

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – A driver was found to have an alcohol level of 3.38 when he was stopped during a routine traffic control in Grimisuat, above Sion in canton Valais, at 17:00 Monday. The legal limit for drinking and driving in Switzerland is 0.05%. The driver showed clear signs of inebriation, say Valais police, and […]

Bolt pulls out of Zurich Diamond League

ZURICH, SWITZERLAND – Usain Bolt will not be racing Thursday in Zurich at the Weltklasse Diamond League event, calling an end to his season. He ran 100 metres in 9.98 seconds in Warsaw Saturday night, but his coach says he now needs to take advantage of an injury-free period to prepare for the 2015 season. […]