Switzerland: Extension of temporary withholding tax exemption for Swiss "too-big-to-fail" bonds


Clearstream Banking1 informs customers that the current applicable withholding tax exemption on interest from Swiss bonds subject to the “too-big-to-fail” rules which is in place for Contingent Convertible bonds and Write-down bonds issued from 2013 as well as Bail-in bonds issued from 2017 and subject to expiration by the end of 2021, will be extended until the end of 2026 from 

1 January 2022

Impact on customers

Interest from the following Swiss bonds continue to be exempt from withholding tax:

  • Contingent Convertible bonds and Write-down bonds in line with Swiss Banking Act articles 11 to 13 issued by Swiss banks and approved by the Swiss banking regulator FINMA on crediting the bond against the required own funds, issued between 1 January 2013 and 31 December 2026.
  • Bail-in bonds which are bonds issued by Swiss banks for which measures may be ordered in accordance with Swiss Banking Act Articles 28–32 provided that:
    • the bond can be reduced or converted into equity through a restructuring plan in accordance with Swiss Banking Act Article 31 paragraph 3,
    • the Swiss banking regulator FINMA has approved the bond with a view to meeting regulatory requirements, and
    • the bond is issued between 1 January 2017 and 31 December 2026 or during this period a change of issuer took or takes place.

Neither Clearstream Banking nor the domestic depository UBS Switzerland AG publishes any bond lists which fulfil the above criteria for withholding tax exemption. Such information is available either from the prospectus of a bond or, after an interest payment, from the quotation list by the Swiss Federal Tax Administration.

Furthermore, Clearstream does not assess whether the conditions for a withholding tax exemption as per the above criteria for a specific bond might be fulfilled or not; interest payments are credited as received by the issuers which are responsible for withholding.

Further information

For further information, please contact the Clearstream Banking Tax Help Desk, Clearstream Banking Client Services or your Relationship Officer.

1. Clearstream Banking refers collectively to Clearstream Banking S.A., registered office at 42, avenue John F. Kennedy, L-1855 Luxembourg, and registered with the Luxembourg Trade and Companies Register under number B-9248, and Clearstream Banking AG (for Clearstream Banking AG customers using Creation Accounts), registered office at 61, Mergenthalerallee, 65760 Eschborn, Germany and registered in Register B of the Amtsgericht Frankfurt am Main, Germany under number HRB 7500.