Just How Safe Are Swiss Bank Accounts?

While most U.S. citizens choose to keep their money in domestic banks, there are about a million and one reasons that the banking system in Switzerland is appealing. Businesses with major holdings might be interested in a bank account in the Cayman Islands, but the Swiss bank account is somewhat of a safer and more accessible option for everyday U.S. citizens. You don’t have to travel to Switzerland to keep your money there, but it would behoove you to know what you’re getting yourself into. Complete a masters in international relations and you will know why some business owners and even working individuals might want to stash some of their cash offshore. It isn’t about hiding money or even being wary of U.S. based banks. Here’s why Swiss bank accounts are safe and often a great way to save on federal taxes.

Keeping Your Business Private

Did you know that bank employees in the U.S. are required to report all transactions totaling over $10,000 to the I.R.S.? You could be pulling out money to wire to a relative who is having financial trouble in a different state or just moving money to a different bank for personal reasons. Either way, what should be a quick and easy transaction may require you to sit in the waiting area while bank employees fill out extra forms. Unfortunately, criminals will go through great lengths to launder money and so bank officials have an obligation to report anything that appears unusual to the government. If you maintain a bank account in Switzerland you will have a much higher degree of privacy.

Swiss Bank Accounts Have Limits

If you believe you can benefit from maintaining a bank account based in Switzerland you need to be holding onto a lot of cash. In short, around $100,000 is minimally needed to even open a bank account in Switzerland if you’re not a citizen. This means that you will need to be prepared to part with and keep a substantial amount of money overseas in a Swiss bank account, with no plans to spend it anytime soon. Otherwise, going through the trouble of opening an account would be a waste of time in the end.

You Won’t Be Tempted to Spend

Since Swiss bank accounts have minimum balance requirements, you can’t use it like you would a domestic bank account. So, you can forget about transferring or wiring funds between bank accounts on a regular balance in most cases. If you are comparing international relations graduate programs, then seeing how finances work in Switzerland work with foreign clients is a great place to start. You can use your experiences to see how banking works in Europe as a whole in comparison to the U.S. when you are a foreign national.

Once you have a bank account in Switzerland opened you can just do the minimum that is necessary to keep it active. Make deposits as necessary and always stay in communication with the bank. If anything, you’ll have a legitimate reason to travel to Switzerland at least once a year to check on your financial affairs.

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I am discussing all kinds of business and finance topics on this blog and I hope that the information I provide will prove to be useful.